Brexit turmoil: who's in 'control' now?
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Brian



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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 9:06 am    Post subject:  Reply with quote
A periodic post from me.

With opinion polls showing that immigration is no longer the main reason for leaving the EU, and that access to the single market should be a priority in negotiations.
While politicians in both Tory and Labour Parties simply cannot grasp the reality of Brexit, and that if this ineptitude continues, the UK will be dumped unceremoniously out of the EU in March 2019 and into World Trade Organisation rules.
The LibDems, Greens, SNP, Plaid, SDLP and Sinn Fein understand this but unfortunately have too little influence to sway against this potential disaster.
However they can and should call for a second referendum on leaving the EU before March 2019, this could stop the impasse of the Tories being terrified to call a general election because of an imminent defeat.
What we are now seeing is proof positive why Britain in its post Imperial decline needed to join Europe in the first place, and why the likes of Fox, Johnson, Gove, Davis and Co are living in a fools paradise.
If they and others in the Tory and indeed Labour Party wish to commit suicide, they are more than welcome, however they have absolutely no right to take this country and its citizens with them.
Another mandate is required before it is too late, and that should be in the form of another Referendum.
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Jon Teunon



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PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 9:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
I completely agree Brian and apparently so do most Labour members:

Quote:
Support for Britain to remain in the EU single market and customs union is overwhelming among Labour party members, according to a poll showing that more than eight out of 10 think the UK should stay in Europe’s key trading blocs.

The figures, from research carried out as part of the Party Members Project funded by the Economic and Social Research Council and shared exclusively with the Guardian, also show heavy backing for a second referendum.

The figures could pile pressure on Jeremy Corbyn over his party’s position on Brexit, which is currently against maintaining full single market membership, because he is determined to give members a bigger voice.

The Labour leader told his party’s MPs on Monday night that the party had 560,000 members whom he wanted to be actively engaging with.

On Brexit, the survey revealed that their views are fiercely pro-EU, including that:

     * 49% of members think there should “definitely” be a vote on the final Brexit deal, with a further 29.4% answering “more yes than no” to the question, and only 8.8% definitely opposing it.
   
     * Two-thirds of members (66%) think Britain should definitely stay in the single market with a further fifth (20.7%) saying “more yes than no” to the question. Only 4.2% of Labour members said they definitely believed Britain should leave the grouping.
   
     * There were similar levels of support on the customs union with 63.1% saying Britain should definitely stay within the group, 22.2% leaning towards the same position, and only 2.4% saying the UK should definitely leave it.

Corbyn and his shadow Brexit secretary, Keir Starmer, have argued that the UK has to leave the single market to fulfil the Brexit vote, but that the party will fight to retain the benefits of the free trade area.

However, critics, including on Labour’s own backbenches, have attacked that position, with one senior figure in the party telling the Guardian that there were divisions at shadow cabinet level over the issue.

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Jon Teunon



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PostPosted: Thu Jul 20, 2017 10:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Former external member of the monetary policy committee at the Bank of England Danny Blanchflower is quite sure about the economic impact of Brexit in the here and now:

Quote:
The main reason inflation is rising in the UK is because of Brexit. Import prices have risen because of the fall in the value of the pound, which is down about 13% to the dollar from $1.49 on 23 June versus $1.30 today, hence inflation.


The economist who resigned last Summer from Labour's economic advisory council because like others he was so disillusioned by Corbyn's lukewarm participation in the Remain campaign is also adamant that circumstances are only going to get worsen:

Quote:
The Brexit vote was largely unexpected and was not priced in by the markets. The fall in the pound occurred because markets felt that UK prospects had deteriorated as a result of the vote to leave the EU. Experts predicted that with this big rise in uncertainty consumers would start to save more and spend less as a precaution, but they didn’t. Consumer spending held up and unsecured borrowing rose sharply. That is why the economy took longer to slow than many, myself included, expected.

But that is now in full reverse as prices are rising faster than wages, which are growing at under 2%, so real wages, adjusted for price rises, are falling once more. Pay settlements are coming in at a norm of 2%.

There is little or no likelihood that wage growth is going to pick up beyond 2% any time soon. Consumers will retrench and spend less and demand will drop. The savings rate, which is at historically low rates, will start to pick up. Workers will continue to hurt. According to official data real wages are 7% below pre-recession levels, so pay packets buy less.

The economy in 2017 has started slowing. UK retail sales grew at the slowest rate for four years in June. The index of production was estimated to have decreased by 1.2% in the three months to May 2017 compared with the three months to February 2017. In the first quarter of 2017 the UK economy was the slowest growing economy in the G8 and the EU28. Business confidence has fallen and is now at its lowest point for almost six years, the economic consultancy IHS Markit reports.


Something for all British polticians to ponder over the Summer recess as negotiations with the EU continue to stall. As Blanchflower puts it: "In economic terms, the Brexit chickens have started to come home to roost."
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Brian



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 11:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote
For some Labour MPs and the majority of Tory MPs and members of cabinet including PM Theresa May, an old lesson needs to be remembered and relearned, and that is that the economy is THE priority.
With common sense prevailing in the Business and Financial sector as well as the trade unions, that simply curtailing immigration at the cost of all else is an absolute recipe for disaster.
While a transition period is now recognised for free movement of people to be sustained until UK business and the economy can re adjust to whatever form of Brexit is actually finally agreed.
It is starting to look like the tide is turning against the Tory Right Wing and their Ukip allies, no matter how many times David Davis goes boozing with Nigel Farage.
Even with negotiations in the still very early stages we can see how inept Davis and his team are compared with their EU counterparts.
This very British coup has actually failed, and we can see that with calls for a second EU Referendum gathering pace and Philip Hammond staying put in Cabinet, that the Hard Brexiteers have been defeated.
Theresa May is now polling at record low percentages, Labour is targeting Tory marginal seats where the likes of Iain Duncan Smith are vulnerable, while Jeremy Corbyn continues to win the popular vote.
Whether Theresa May will actually still be Prime Minister by the autumn is anybody's guess, but replacing her as Tory leader is not going to save this government.
Not only does Labour simply have to wait until the Tories implode in government but Michel Barnier and the EU negotiating team also know this and also wait.
If Labour is to be the next government a decision is required soon on the access of the single market and customs union.
While re employing Blanchflower, Varoufakis and Pickerty as economic consultants might be a good idea.





http://www.independent.co.uk/news...-may-philip-hammond-a7852191.html
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Jon Teunon



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PostPosted: Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote
Indeed Brian. Whether politicians acknowledge it or or not (and the disingenuous Brexit campaign certainly did not last year) all Brexit choices will cost our economy dear:

Quote:
Brexiteers rejected the Treasury’s projections for the cost of Brexit last year as “project fear”. But the Centre for Economic Performance at the London School of Economics has remodelled the trade consequences. It concludes that the hardest form of Brexit, a reversion to WTO terms, would cut trade by 40% over ten years and reduce annual income per person by 2.6%. A softer version like the Norwegian model would cut trade by 20-25% and reduce annual incomes by 1.3%. And these are just static effects. There would also be dynamic negative effects from lower investment and slower productivity growth.

Britons are unprepared for such a hit to their incomes. And the more distant Britain’s relationship with the EU, the bigger the income loss. This is a crucial trade-off that Mrs May’s government has been reluctant to acknowledge. Britons face a choice: to minimise losses from Brexit, they must cede some sovereignty to the EU, while to maximise freedom from Brussels, they must accept a larger drop in incomes.

What makes this choice harder is the state of the economy. Immediately after the referendum Brexiteers crowed that the doomsters were wrong: the economy had not suffered and confidence remained high. Yet in the first quarter of 2017 Britain fell from being one of the fastest-growing economies in the EU to the slowest-growing, partly because of uncertainties over Brexit. Higher inflation, caused in part by a fall in the pound, is eating into real incomes. It is no wonder that Philip Hammond, the chancellor, is demanding that the economy should be given higher priority in the Brexit negotiations. Labour is also arguing for a “jobs first” Brexit.

Nor is trade with the EU the only problem. Before even getting into new trade deals, Dr Fox must find a way to replicate the 35 free-trade agreements that Britain currently has via the EU with 53 countries. The raw arithmetic is that some 44% of British exports go to the EU, 16% to countries with which the EU already has a free-trade deal and about 20% to America. Donald Trump may have promised an early deal with Britain, but experience shows it will be neither easy nor quick—and Mr Trump may then be long gone.

Third countries need to know the terms of Britain’s trade with the EU before making bilateral deals. Monique Ebell of the National Institute of Economic and Social Research, a think-tank, calculates that downgrading from single-market membership to a free-trade deal with the EU would reduce British trade by about a fifth, whereas free-trade deals with the four BRIC countries plus America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Indonesia and South Africa combined would boost it by just 5%.


Since any Brexit will involve trade-offs between the economy and "sovereignty" - a dimension which Brexiteers have failed to make explicit - the have-and-eat-cake which was being peddled to voters in the referendum was and is unavailable. So who should decide how much emphasis is given to each of these trade-offs during the negotiations? Politicians who misinformed the electorate out of cynicism ore ignorance or the people themselves who will have to bear the consequences of Brexit the most?


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