Musings on the world. Thoughts & opinions (when I have them) are my own.
Oct 7, 2018 • 5 tweets • 2 min read
1) It's still Hard #Brexit - thread
Couple of things to point out as we head to "Canada ++++"
A) it suits the EU as a fallback but
B) as far as the UK is concerned, its still damaging, draining, hardest of hard Brexits & nothing to be celebrated
Here's what we've forgotten
2) firstly, yes the EU27 would prefer we remain & if not they'd prefer a close arrangement - but at this point they'd settle for the island of Ireland being protected & an orderly exit
They're not going to save us from ourselves
They can minimise the damage of UK leaving SM
Sep 29, 2018 • 15 tweets • 6 min read
1) Thread - Labour, dodgy right Brexit activities & missed opportunities
Today I was a bystander in a discussion between @OwenJones84 & @JolyonMaugham around tweeting on Vote Leave's illegal spending, which I think is part of a bigger missed opportunity on #Brexit for Labour 2) Lets just be honest - the Tory party & #Brexit has always been dodgy. Charlatans who misled people given high government office and all that. But the last few months have had some significant revelations of dubious practices, only one of which was Vote Leave illegal spending
@RichardElwes@sjwrenlewis 2) (sorry, 2 "either"s there....)
As with Richard, this is not about my beliefs but public perception
Soft Brexit = Betrayal/Vassal state portrayal from Leavers, instant political cost
Hard Brexit = economic cost, which obviously leads to political cost in short order
Sep 28, 2018 • 6 tweets • 2 min read
1) Corbyn, control & democracy
The attempt to crush the #PeoplesVote initiative from Corbyn's team should ring alarm bells for anyone who values democracy
& transparency, inside Labour or outside. He is and will always be an authoritarian
#Lab182) you can argue back and forth on whether a #PeoplesVote is strategically good, bad or horrendous for Labour, or that Corbyn's offer to work with the Tories on #Brexit is "political theatre". The fact is the new Labour position is the exact opposite of what the members wanted
Sep 28, 2018 • 13 tweets • 8 min read
1) Was determined to back off Labour & Corbyn this week & support them going forward on #Brexit
But now this, following Corbyn's speech.
Corbyn's team want Brexit. They don't want to listen to the members on a #PeoplesVote & now it's been raised, they are switching position
2) let's just look at the chronology
I) Starmer (but no one else in Leadership) talks occasionally over last 2 years about "exact same benefits" 6 tests
ii) privately, @BarryGardiner describes them as nonsense
Sep 26, 2018 • 4 tweets • 2 min read
1) Great article on why #Brexit is insoluble
We can rail about respecting the vote, the EU being stubborn,May being incompetent etc all day long. The fact is it cannot be negotiated successfully, and anyone who believes otherwise is mistaken #Lab18
blogs.lse.ac.uk/brexit/2018/09…2) reasons are very simple, and always have been. The deal that was promised & any feasible deal are so far apart as to be unrecognisable
Either Brexit will be so painful that it will destroy the party who implements or so meaningless that it would be embarrassing to implement
Sep 25, 2018 • 4 tweets • 2 min read
1) Numerous Lexit commentators saying "Remain option will kill Labour"
*This* Brexit is a Tory program, just as austerity was. And austerity got a big vote in 2010 & an even bigger one in 2015.
If it's the wrong policy it should be opposed, even if it's "popular" #Lab182) this Labour movement has criticised the last for being Tory-lite on austerity. Fair enough.
But how then can Labour be Tory-lite on #Brexit, which will also hit their voters as austerity did?
Because it won one dodgy vote? #Lab18
Sep 25, 2018 • 11 tweets • 4 min read
1) Thread - Leavers "bored with the details" on #Brexit
Fascinating poll which reveals 66% of Leave Voters are uninterested in exactly how we leave the EU, they just want to leave. This brings into question - exactly *what* are we achieving pushing for Brexit? #Lab182) the main point here is that only 1/6 of the country, at most, actually care whether we leave on WTO terms or Norway+Single Market or anything in between. The rest either want to Remain or are uninterested in the details of leaving. This leads to several conclusions
Sep 24, 2018 • 23 tweets • 7 min read
1) Thread - Corbyn, #Brexit & Labour democracy - let's just be honest, it's dead
Saddened but not surprised by this reversal by Labour Leadership.
Labour members overwhelmingly support a People's vote, and they have been comprehensively overridden
#LabourConference20182) so, full disclosure, I'm not a Corbyn fan but I was absolutely prepared to "lay down arms" if something approaching a pro people's vote motion came out of last night's horsetrading. It didn't. A fudge came out, and that fudge was hardened into a pro brexit position
It's fair to say the campaign for a people's vote is a major force for this week's conference
100s of motions from the CLPs
Corbyn said he'd respect conference
2) Now, obviously politics is complex however Corbyn did say he came into the Leadership to empower the members - yes, Blair & other leaders probably played dodgy tricks in these "compositing" events but Corbyn specifically said he would be different & far more democratic
Sep 23, 2018 • 26 tweets • 8 min read
1) Thread: "We knew what we were voting for" & #Brexit
This shouldn't really need saying but no, we didn't, we couldn't, because of the dishonest campaign ran by the Vote Leavers
History has been rewritten but the following are some edited highlights #Lab18#LabourConference20182) Firstly, what did Vote Leave promise?
1) Thread on asking the same question over & over on #Brexit
This is the main argument against a #peoplesvote from Brexit supporters - "we already voted, we knew what we were voting for"
The problem with this argument is that the evidence shows Leavers saw the wrong question 2) now, hard-line leavers will say "rubbish, we knew what we were voting for" however there's no evidence whatsoever that the majority did. Vote Leave lied to them, comprehensively, completely & effectively
This is actually the real question, and always was
Sep 22, 2018 • 16 tweets • 5 min read
1) Austerity, #Brexit and fake narratives
1 of 2 threads on fake Brexit narratives doing the rounds
Some Labour types have continually tried to tie Brexit to Austerity as an excuse for Labour's Brexit appeasement - "we must respect the causes"
This, frankly, is nonsense 2) If you look at the actual demographics of the vote, the austerity argument doesn't stack up.
There are exceptions of course however it's fairly clear austerity didn't cause Brexit because those who *perceived they were most at risk* voted Remain
Sep 21, 2018 • 4 tweets • 4 min read
1) @BBC & #Brexit in a nutshell
The Chequers plan was widely reported as unworkable
Other media were reporting how the Tories were fighting over a pointless proposal deal
@bbcnickrobinson *must* have known this & yet like others in the BBC he's calling it a "slap in the face"
@BBC@bbcnickrobinson 2) Anyone paying any attention knew the EU would have to reject the over complicated & deeply flawed Chequers plan, it was just a matter of when & yet @KirstyWark described the rejection as "surprising", why?
There's only one story here, and it's actually news wise a good one
Sep 21, 2018 • 7 tweets • 4 min read
1) Thread - direct question for the Corbyn "long gamers"
Just when you think the Corbyn #Brexit long game illusion has finally subsided, commentators like @AaronBastani@AbiWilks & @billybragg fire it up again
So this is a direct question - how does this Corbyn tweet help? 2) Yesterday the EU simply reiterated what they had always said, the Chequers plan was unworkable, a cherry pick deal and undermined the 4 freedoms.
Anyone paying attention knew that for months
Numerous commentators said the Tory party was fighting over a non #Brexit deal
Sep 19, 2018 • 13 tweets • 4 min read
1) Thread - why do #FBPE peeps attack Corbyn so much?
Many Labour supporters ask, perhaps with some justification, "why do FBPEers go after Labour? This is a Tory problem!"
Here's my personal reasons. I'm guessing however they probably resonate with others
2) firstly, practical, and this is unfair but just how it is.
There is little traction to be gained by attacking the Tory #Brexit position because a majority of Tory voters will simply not care, they support Brexit blindly and won't change their minds easily
Sep 19, 2018 • 4 tweets • 2 min read
1) Core Labour #Brexit irony:
Corbyn is a (not so) secret brexiter
The largely remain Labour PLP tried to dislodge him after the referendum
He was saved by a wave of new Labour members
These new members are also overwhelmingly remainers
By saving him, they kept Brexit alive
2) these new members attack parts of the PLP for "plotting" & "undermining" Corbyn, whilst Corbyn tries to torpedo any Soft #Brexit Labour position
Only overwhelming support will force a debate on a #PeoplesVote at conference, against Corbyn's wishes
independent.co.uk/news/uk/politi…@OwenJones84 2) you've deliberately used language like "overthrow the referendum" to make opposing #Brexit seem undemocratic, ignored the corruption of the Leave Campaign and aligned yourself, in effect with brexiter
Well here's the newsflash
The Labour movement wants to "overthrow Brexit"
Sep 9, 2018 • 16 tweets • 3 min read
1) Thread - the great Student accommodation Ponzi scheme
(This thread won't end with what you might think)
There's a torrent of "Student accommodation" blocks, 25 stories high, being put up in my current and home town centre, I assume it's happening all over
Scam in plain sight?
2) now happy to be corrected however these blocks are reasonably luxurious (en suite, gym in the basement etc) and are a world away from the ragged student housing I had back in the day.
The prices are too, upwards of £125 per week!
Aug 25, 2018 • 7 tweets • 2 min read
1) Thread - appeasement
If history has taught us anything it's that you cannot appease extremists. They will not be placated, it's just seen as weakness. May has tried it with the ERG, but it's been tried throughout history.
theguardian.com/politics/2018/…2) #Brexit was an oversold idea, based on lies. It's foundations are in division, fear & extreme nationalism. Any possible positives are trivial in comparison. Even for those who say "it's not about immigration" well, it's mostly about immigration.
So there's no good Brexit
Aug 23, 2018 • 11 tweets • 4 min read
1) Corbyn, #Brexit & facing reality - thread
Since this was posted there's been several variations from his supporters on why his responses were "reasonable", which in turn illustrate how far they are happy to put party before country, and Corbyn before party
2) the question, as a reminder, was very simple "do you (personally) believe we'll be better or worse off after #Brexit?"
One response is "he answered this"
He absolutely didn't, he waffled & none of his 6 answers can be interpreted as "yes" or "no"