Friday 4 October 2019

End Game?

One of the rules of journalism seems to be that a headline ending in a question-mark deserves the answer "no".  Still, we're in such uncertain times; we've pretty much eschewed prediction; and nobody want to advance even a tentative observation with the risk it will be trashed within the day.

So "?" it is.  However ...

Publication of the Boris Plan does seem to have characteristics of the starting-whistle of the End Game.  Immediately rubbished by the other side before they'd even read it; and statements like "we'll have to see how far they are willing to move on this before we go any further"  - those are classic gambits from Negotiating 1.01.   So much, so risible from the EC etc.  The more important factors, IMHO, are these:
  • it plays to the rapidly streamlining moods of the hour, which I would characterise as (a) Revoke Now (© J.Swinson);  (b) Get It Done (© B.Johnson);  (c) errrr... (© S.Milne).
  • [note that I don't list No Deal Now Or We'll Drag Everything Down To The Bottomless Pit, © contested between ERG and N.Farage.  Haven't heard very much of that just recently] 
  • the players that matter for its success have (apparently) been squared away: ERG, DUP (& maybe a handful of Labour MPs?).  For myself, with total lack of any inside information, Farage is an open issue in this regard [see above & below]
  • Corbyn has done nothing more subtle than reject it outright on the spot, and in so doing, tried to bundle up all Labour MPs into this rejection with a whisk of his hand - i.e. he has responded exactly as expected which means exactly as catered for 
It's pretty clear how Cummings/Johnson reckons this plays out from here.  Move to a Commons vote, irrespective of whatever noises are coming from Brussels (see below); win vote; present Brussels with a you-can-have-it-if-you-want-it fait accompli; if they still reject, Boris can No-Deal legitimately and legally.

  • the Pure Malice faction will be attempting to get a 100%, un-nuanced, total and utter rejection from the whole of the EU 27 and every organ of the EC.  That might cloud the issue if it's put to a Commons vote 
  • as stated here several times of late, the Grieve-Starmer-Bercow faction have proved to be fairly ingenious, and will be on the task 24/7.  Can't be sure (again, from my position of ignorance) what other outrageous parliamentary tactics they may try
  • SC seems willing to opine on whether government actions are in good faith or not - and everyone's screaming "Boris is acting in Bad Faith"
  • Farage.
Still: ERG + Tory Mainstream (incl most of the unwhipped rebels) + DUP = majority.  The key is sheer battle-fatigue, and maybe panic, amongst the Spartans - partly engendered by how 'clever' Grieve-Starmer-Bercow have been, showing them just how difficult it will be to drive for the Bottomless Pit.

Anyhow, that's my weekend summary.  Yours?



Nick Drew said...

PS: we have to assume Cummings thinks he has the measure of Farage.

david morris said...

Genuinely puzzled as to how this relates to the decision made by the UK Electorate in June 2016... Gameplaying by the political class may seem important within the WestminsterMedia bubble, but outside it ?

Anonymous said...

I'm with david m on this one.

If they were all so f-ing clever why are we having to cliff edge this.

Walk away. It doesn't matter who blames who. We're out.

CityUnslicker said...

Great summary, it would make for interesting viewing if only it had not leaked out of Westminster, sadly there are now way too many warning signs in the economy on an impending recession which normally beings with a big market crash - oh look, we are in the traditional market crash month of October.

I don't see how Boris does it myself, he will be forced to get an extension, the 2nd of many. Then who knows, more months or paralysis as the economy tanks.

Timbo614 said...

I've read a theory that Boris has a possible way out via the Queen's speech. He porogues on Tuesday the 14th is scheduled for the Queen's speech(the Queen may be up for a bit of meddlesome trouble making given the recent SC ruling). He has to make the contents of HMQ's speech so objectionable to the Lab/Libs that with his own MPs voting against it too it gets voted it down... By convention he can then call an election immediately and outside of the FTPA neatly sidestepping the Benn act because no-one is actually PM at the apposite moment? The election of course takes us well past the 31st. I haven't read up on this but what say any studunts of our "constitution"?

andrew said...

Timbo is the new dominic cummings.

All i can add to that is that if he gets the erg to stay at home on the day of the vote, some of the opposition will have to vote for the govt to prevent an election.

However i am sure bercow has that covered. If they suspect that they will repeal the 'we leave on 31 oct' act. Then call an election.

I wonder what the country would make of that.

E-K said...

To think. A few restrictions on mass immigration would have avoided all of this. Much of it could have been done from within, no EU permission required. Remain would have won easily.


The modernists want it all. They want it now. The silly billies told an enfranchised population to shut up and stop being racist.

Mass immigration was about the destruction of our nation. Well they don't get to control what a destroyed nation looks like.

Things get out of hand when cowboy builders take sledgehammers to a cathedral.

Anonymous said...

E-K - spot on.

More importantly ;-) if that was a red for Argentina, how did Hooper stay on the field against Wales?

Anonymous said...

"A few restrictions on mass immigration would have avoided all of this"

No it wouldn't. At the end of the day I think the majority of people in the UK do not want to be part of a United States of Europe.

Especially when the sweaties go their own way.

Raedwald said...

Personally, I decided to destroy the illiberal political elite in 2007, following the smoking ban.