Like European leaders in 1914, Britain is sleepwalking towards (Brexit) catastrophe.
While over the last few weeks government ministers have been travelling the highways and byways of Europe talking up the possibility of a ‘No Deal Brexit’ (and predictably blaming the EU in advance), the consequences of a no deal or hard Brexit have become alarmingly clear.
Farmers warn of critical food shortages, doctors tell us of the threat to essential drugs and other medical supplies, Dover council predicts 13-mile tailbacks on the M20 “for years”, with food rotting in lorries, the Bank of England warns of further falls in sterling, sluggish growth, disruption to trade and higher prices, aviation bosses talk of planes unable to fly, bosses of key sectors such as food processing, health and care are facing the prospect of crippling staff shortages. And so the list goes on. This is not ‘Project Fear’, but ‘Project Reality’. Not that it worries Brextremists like Jacob Rees-Mogg, who is moving his hedge fund to Ireland, or Nigel Lawson, who is moving to the south of France. But for the rest of us the consequences are very serious indeed. But all this is not inevitable. A You Gov poll recently of 10,000 people reveals a significant shift in opinion since the referendum. A clear majority (53 per cent, rising to 56 per cent in the event of ‘no deal’) backs remaining in the EU, nearly three quarters thought “many promises made by the Leave campaign will be broken”, over two thirds thought “we will get a bad deal from Brexit”, and by almost two to one people thought trading freely with the EU was more important than controlling immigration.
People are increasingly taking the view that the government is incapable of sorting out the mess, and are also aware that the self-imposed deadline of March 29, 2019 when we could crash out with no deal is getting uncomfortably close. That is why the people should ‘take back control’ and have the final say on the deal.
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