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Sun Feb 4, 2018, 08:04 AM

Brexit journey from hubris to humiliation (Gary Younge)

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/feb/03/imperial-fantasies-brexit-theresa-may?CMP=share_btn_fb

... The past 18 months have illustrated the journey from hubris to humiliation. For a couple of generations, we have seen our attributes and others’ weaknesses through the wrong side of a magnifying glass; now our diminished state is becoming fully apparent, and, like Boris Johnson, the foreign secretary, reciting Kipling in Myanmar, we are struggling to adjust.

This awakening would be funny (abroad they find it hilarious) if it were not so consequential. Johnson told the Commons the EU27 could “go whistle” for an extortionate Brexit bill. They whistled; now we will cough, to the tune of £35-40bn.

During her 2017 election campaign, Theresa May, channelling her inner Thatcher, boasted about being a “bloody difficult woman”. “The next man to find that out will be Jean-Claude Juncker,” she claimed. In fact Juncker, the president of the European commission, and his team have found May more overwhelmed and befuddled than overwhelming and belligerent. After one Downing Street dinner, European negotiators concluded that she “does not live on planet Mars but rather in a galaxy very far away”...

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Arrow 7 replies Author Time Post
Reply Brexit journey from hubris to humiliation (Gary Younge) (Original post)
Ghost Dog Feb 2018 OP
gibraltar72 Feb 2018 #1
Ghost Dog Feb 2018 #7
lunatica Feb 2018 #2
Ghost Dog Feb 2018 #3
Thyla Feb 2018 #4
Ghost Dog Feb 2018 #5
Ghost Dog Feb 2018 #6

Response to Ghost Dog (Original post)

Sun Feb 4, 2018, 10:15 AM

1. What do you call a rube in the UK?

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Response to gibraltar72 (Reply #1)

Tue Feb 6, 2018, 06:09 AM

7. Well, if you mean 'rustic'

there aren't many left... In the sense of 'naive', I prefer 'brainwashed' or 'propaganda victims' and 'group-thinkers'.

In the international and EU context, of course, we are dealing in general with a bunch of provincials.

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Response to Ghost Dog (Original post)

Sun Feb 4, 2018, 11:16 AM

2. Good article

The US is following the same route. Hubris is our downfall and it’s been happening since Cheney ran the country.

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Response to lunatica (Reply #2)

Sun Feb 4, 2018, 01:57 PM

3. Yeah. Please understand my/our sympathy...

I'm a self-exiled Brit who's been living and learning in Spain these last thirty years (I'll be sixty-four this coming summer). While recognising the weight (el peso, a pesar de los pesares) of all the shared history, of which I have read and discussed a lot (in Spanish culture, good communication is natural)), often, but not always, conflictive, I have seen few expressions of hilarity amongst Spanish people (who historically have experienced, perhaps more than once, "loss of Greatness" ) . More often, I get the sense that my Spanish and other European friends share my sense that we are all witnessing, right now, tragedy.

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Response to Ghost Dog (Reply #3)

Sun Feb 4, 2018, 02:18 PM

4. I live in Spain too, not a Brit though, or Spaniard...

and married to a French woman. so yeah as you say the reactions of the rest of the EU seem to be a mixture of humour, anger or just plain old "about time" with the silent majority mourning the tragedy of the whole thing. And to be fair the initial hubris shown had to be fake, I mean May knew it was a bum deal and she was the sacrificial lamb who had no right at all to go in arrogant. And it was seen through right from the beginning because the UK really hold no cards at the table.

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Response to Thyla (Reply #4)

Sun Feb 4, 2018, 04:35 PM

5. "About time" is definitely a generally-felt sentiment,

I see.

Thanks for that, Thyla.

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Response to Ghost Dog (Original post)

Tue Feb 6, 2018, 05:57 AM

6. Brexit mess cannot continue (Matthew d'Ancona)

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/feb/04/brexit-mess-theresa-may-tories

... Were I in May’s shoes, I would pre-empt a confidence vote forced by letters from 48 of my own MPs, and – in the manner of John Major in 1995 – demand one myself (if necessary by instructing sympathetic backbenchers to trigger the process). I would then set out an explicit, unambiguous and unapologetic strategy for Brexit, and instruct the Conservative parliamentary party to back me or sack me.

Let us say, as seems quite probable, that MPs sacked her, as they did Iain Duncan Smith in 2003. There would then be a period of bedlam as the Tory party fought with teeth bared and daggers drawn to settle not only its future but the future of Britain’s relationship with the EU. It would be ugly, protracted and almost entirely destructive.

Would the answer that emerged at the end be sustainable? Would the new Conservative leader – and, if the Commons pact with the Democratic Unionist party held – prime minister be able to provide the discipline and clear sense of trajectory that has been so conspicuously lacking under May? Quite possibly not. But that is the whole point. It may well be that the Tory party, as presently constituted, is structurally incapable of meeting the patriotic needs of the hour. It really is for the Conservatives, and not the rest of us, to prove that this suspicion is unfounded.

At any rate, the present arrangement is a hideous international embarrassment. It seems to me painfully obvious that we need an extension of the negotiating period set by article 50 – entirely possible under its section 3 – if only to replace panic with some semblance of deliberation. And, sooner rather than later, there should be another general election...


... Note that the Tory party infighting process would be almost entirely undemocratic, would reflect little of the 'will of the people' nor their interests, and only in the furthest reaches of the imagination could be called 'patriotic'. - GD

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