Shake it all about: Brexit thread II

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  • Well, the more rabid end of the Brexit spectrum will certainly notice, and probably demand that it's immediately burnt in the town square. I don't really know if May and Davis are trying to outwit the Ultras, or calling their bluff. There are already ructions over the fishing deal, a very sore point in Scotland.

    Yes, the fishing part certainly seems to have got very contentious - as expected of course, as it's a total failure to "take back control". In the news this morning it was rumoured that Rees Mogg would be boarding a fishing vessel to sail down the Thames and then throw fish overboard in protest.

    He's now denied that he'll be throwing any fish, but not doubt lots of MPs think the whole deal stinks.
  • Fishing is a strange issue. Yes, there are (necessary) restrictions on what can be caught and at present that allowance is shared between all EU nations (at least those with fishing fleets). So, Brexit will mean that UK fishermen can catch more fish from UK waters, but of course they'll no longer have access to other EU waters so I can't see how the total amount of fish caught will change much. Plus, the market for much of that fish will still be in the rest of the EU and export costs will rise with tariffs and border controls. And, the UK fisheries will still need to be controlled with quotas to maintain stocks - and as fish don't see lines on maps those will need to be agreed with the other EU nations who will be fishing their own waters for the same fish.

    Though, the fisheries policy was probably the most inefficient and problematic of all the EU structures and desperately in need of reform. It is absurd that fish were being caught, and thrown back because of quotas even though they were already dead or wouldn't survive a return to the sea. Of course, we had MEPs who were supposed to be working on fisheries who refused to do their job, so we can hardly put the full blame for that on EU bureaucrats. But, I also think in many cases fishermen were partly to blame as they seemed to treat their quota as a target to reach as close as possible. And, consumers and supermarkets not wanting to pay a fair price for a limited resource, a price that would mean a boat returning with 15-20% below quota could still sell that fish and make a reasonable living.
  • So far Brexit appears to mean getting none of the things the Brexiteers want and everything they don't want.

    Yey.

  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    mr cheesy wrote: »
    So far Brexit appears to mean getting none of the things the Brexiteers want and everything they don't want.

    Yey.

    Yes - let’s hope that was always the intention.

  • But, I also think in many cases fishermen were partly to blame as they seemed to treat their quota as a target to reach as close as possible.

    Of course fishermen treat the quota as a bloody target. That's their income - they're not just going to think "you know what, I can make 20% less this month, it's OK" particularly when they know that the other guys are going to be out there catching all their fish.

    Quotas will always end up as targets. You have to deal with that - if you need fishermen to catch 20% less fish, you need to reduce the quota by 20%.

    If you want to eliminate the throw-back issue, don't set the quota on fish at all - set the quota in terms of number of days that a boat can be at sea, regulate size / type of net, and so on. Or just cap the total capacity of the fishing fleet, depending on whether you want a small number of fishermen making good money, or a larger number of part-time fishermen.
  • Somehow farmers realise that land isn’t an infinite resource and it must be given a rest. Fishermen do seem to have a short-term view of the living to be made from taking fish from the sea, selling it and all the while maintaining a boat at colossal expense (or so it seems to me).
    Isn’t self-management of fish stocks sensible and who knows fish stocks better than fishermen?
  • CrœsosCrœsos Shipmate
    sionisais wrote: »
    Isn’t self-management of fish stocks sensible and who knows fish stocks better than fishermen?

    You'd think so, but when resource management is left in the hands of profit-driven entities short term gains are usually the first priority. Think of lumber companies clear-cutting forests or the near extinction of the American buffalo in the late nineteenth century.
  • But, I also think in many cases fishermen were partly to blame as they seemed to treat their quota as a target to reach as close as possible.

    Of course fishermen treat the quota as a bloody target. That's their income - they're not just going to think "you know what, I can make 20% less this month, it's OK" particularly when they know that the other guys are going to be out there catching all their fish.
    As I said, if 20% less than their quota still gives a comfortable income then, yes, it'll be OK. But, that requires that fishermen get a fair price for their catch, which is part of the problem. Especially if catching over your quota has significant costs such that aiming for 99.5% and your last haul exceeds that results in a substantial fine makes it a risk.

    When the intention is to ensure sustainability of stocks, then what is needed is to ensure that the number of fish caught do not exceed whatever level is sustainable for that species. Quotas do that automatically, other restrictions are indirect at best. Restricting days means that a boat that happens upon a substantial catch could result in landing too many fish. Net sizes will restrict catching juvenile fish, but do nothing to limit the landing of adult fish - and you add to that the difficulty of landing different species where the mesh size would need to be different.

    Of course there are ways to revise the quota system which have been suggested but never enacted. Quota trading so that if a boat accidentally exceeds their quota they can buy an allocation from another boat still under quota. Or lower the quota by 10% and allow a 10% extra with minimal fine - but massive fine for going over that extra 10%. And if UKIP are that supportive of UK fishermen then they had a seat on the relevant EU committee and could have fought for a better system, or at least a system that favours UK fishermen.

    But, at the end of the day there are only so many fish in the sea. Leaving the EU won't increase that, and so therefore won't increase the number of fish caught if we wish to maintain stocks. There maybe changes to where those fish are caught and where they are landed, but the total caught won't change. Presumably UK based fishermen will catch fish in UK waters currently caught by boats from other European ports, and stop catching fish from the waters of other EU nations.
  • sionisais wrote: »
    Presumably UK based fishermen will catch fish in UK waters currently caught by boats from other European ports, and stop catching fish from the waters of other EU nations.

    Depending on how fishing rights are allocated.
  • Hmm, I wonder where this will leave the Granville bay agreement?
  • Fishing is obviously of great importance to the communities it affects, on the other hand it accounts for less than 1% of GDP. By contrast 1 out of 7 multinationals are looking at moving parts of their business out of the UK.

    Meanwhile JRM can't board his boat because it didn't apply for the correct permit, and is now stuck going around in circles. Welcome to brexit.
  • jay_emmjay_emm Shipmate
    Eutychus wrote: »
    I just find it difficult to envisage a scenario in which even the most ardent Remainers will find it easy to stomach such a complete loss of control if no agreement is reached.
    Yes, but we know who threw our control away. It's nice of the EU to let us have some of their cake.
  • jay_emm wrote: »
    Eutychus wrote: »
    I just find it difficult to envisage a scenario in which even the most ardent Remainers will find it easy to stomach such a complete loss of control if no agreement is reached.
    Yes, but we know who threw our control away. It's nice of the EU to let us have some of their cake.
    Yes, they were in a boat in the Thames throwing away perfectly good fish.
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    I had to chuckle about this - British passports to be made in France.

    Sweet irony :lol:
  • I'm not sure this is as ironic as everyone seems to be suggesting. This is not a problem for the loony Brexiteers, this is what they want.

    Every time any future government wants something, they will be able to scour the globe for the cheapest option and/or *insert your own thought about the possibility of corruption*

    British suppliers will almost certainly lose out most of the time - that's what they want. That's how that Professor Mumford chap sees the future.

    British industry and production dies because we can't compete. As long as we have some other way to keep our economy afloat ("what's that then," cry all the people who have more than a passing interest in our future), we are golden.

    We drop our customs control, allow anyone to send/sell us anything and -hey presto - we are living in an imaginary future Tory country where nobody of any importance has to do any work because there isn't any work left to be done.

    It's mind-numbingly stupid, but apparently they think this is an achievable goal and that having destroyed agriculture, industry and production in the process is a price worth paying.
  • Destroying Britain to, temporarily, feather their own nest is very achievable. It's putting the country back together again afterwards that's the difficult bit.
  • mr cheesy wrote: »
    It's mind-numbingly stupid, but apparently they think this is an achievable goal and that having destroyed agriculture, industry and production in the process is a price worth paying.

    Or they are radical free-marketers who believe that Thatcher didn't go far enough and that the state has to be destroyed in order for the market to supply, a la:

    https://www.lrb.co.uk/v40/n05/william-davies/what-are-they-after
    In Britain, there was more emphasis on the language of economics, specifically the ‘supply side’ idea that the interests of investors and entrepreneurs were paramount. As the theory behind Thatcherism had it, government services shrink everybody’s incentives to produce, compete and invest. They reduce the motivation for businesses to deliver services, and ordinary people’s desire to work. Toughness, even pain, performs an important moral and psychological function in pushing people to come up with solutions.
  • I think there is actually some space here to trip up the plan. Foreign production is likely cheaper but ignores other factors that local production can offer.

    For example an underground coal mine reopened this week in Wales. Of course this is bad for the climate and a regressive step in various other environmental ways.

    But the idea of small scale production for local needs is not a bad one - and it is just possible that meeting local demand could be more efficient than an overseas supplier could manage.

    I just wish they had more imagination in terms of local energy production than a return to coal, sigh.
  • mr cheesy wrote: »
    I think there is actually some space here to trip up the plan. Foreign production is likely cheaper but ignores other factors that local production can offer.

    But the idea of small scale production for local needs is not a bad one - and it is just possible that meeting local demand could be more efficient than an overseas supplier could manage.

    I do not think that their thinking is this developed - there are shades here of 'we can solve the border problem with drones, blockchain and handwaving' or 'don't tell putting a backdoor in cryptography available only to the government is impossible, you boffins are clever, do something about it'.

    For the most part they are hand waving dilettantes with the fear of actual expertise as being something fairly grubby. They *know* it'll work out because .. well they know it .. "has anyone actually tried it anyway?" and so on. I'm reminded of the Stephen Collins cartoon on Gove:

    https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/cartoon/2012/mar/16/1

    Besides, they are all comfortably off - they aren't likely to hurt excessively as the result of Brexit. For the most part they exist within their own spheres which are insulated from any signs of deprivation - probably compare themselves with American compatriots they know, and assume they could attain similar levels of wealth if they could make the country more like America.
  • Yeah sorry I meant there was space for everyone else to trip up the arch-Brexiteers plan (of decimating British manufacturing and production).
  • They seem to be doing a decent job of tripping themselves up in their "I'm more extreme than you" race. Though, not a good enough job that the whole Brexit train comes crashing off the rails.
  • EirenistEirenist Shipmate
    The really ironic point is that had they waited until the UK had actually left the EU they could have awared the passport contract to whoever they liked. (Except that the Treasury would have wanted them to accept the cheapest offer - which is what they have done.)
  • But, that would have caused a delay in production while they went through the procurement process - and, unless they also change all government procurement rules they'd have likely still ended up with the same French supplier. A delay would have been intolerable because you know there'll be a bunch of idiots who apply for a new passport on Brexit day to get their blue one asap who would complain about not being able to because the contract hadn't been placed to supply new passports.
  • But there was a British manufacturer bidding for the passport contract, according to the Telegraph (link with video) De La Rue are querying the decision.
  • According to the BBC news this morning it was put out to tender, De La Rue (the current supplier) put in their price and it was undercut. Government procurement rules then kick in and providing there was no evidence that the cheaper bid would be below the required quality then price wins. Simples.
  • As I said, if 20% less than their quota still gives a comfortable income then, yes, it'll be OK.

    No fisherman is going to voluntarily reduce his income by 20% when he thinks that all the other fishermen are out there catching the max - and indeed he would be foolish to. This is a fine example of the tragedy of the commons.
  • I said reduce catch by 20% (arbitrary number), not reduce income by 20%. The trick is to devise a quota system whereby the costs of exceeding a lower quota are such that fishing to that quota is OK, but reaching the maximum threshold would be too high to risk.

    And, it is just an example of how quotas could be revised. And, I see no viable option other than quotas because other fishing restrictions are indirect methods to achieve an aim of limiting the number of fish caught. Supported by both fair prices so that fishermen can make a decent living at less than the maximum possible catch, and severe penalties for exceeding those quotas (or other activities such as discarding fish - which at present has a maximum fine of a mere £10k).

    At the end of the day though, leaving the CFP will make determining appropriate quotas, and making a living will be harder with less options on where to fish. Our fishermen have been sold yet another lie, and they are not unique in that. The only way of maintaining a sustainable fishing industry is through cooperation; quotas set on the basis of scientific data on stocks of entire populations, not just those in particular areas; freedom to exploit other stocks if the local ones do become over stressed. All of which means something very much like the CFP.
  • Simon Jenkins in the Guardian is fluttering the dovecotes, writing that we are heading for the Norway solution. Not completely convincing, but hope springs eternal. Can't do a link.
  • The passport row seems to show the confusion that Brexit has led to, as we seem to have free trade impulses jostling with protectionism. Buy British, but also find the best deal, wherever from. The Daily Mail has a stonking headline today, protect British jobs etc. It will be interesting to see how this contradiction is resolved - well, there's always obfuscation.
  • The best way to protect British jobs is to remain in the EU, to remove stupid immigration restrictions and invest in the necessary infrastructure for a prosperous economy (education, health, welfare, public transport etc).

    Diametrically opposed to the normal editorial line of the Mail, and of a Tory government enthralled by the lies of the far right.
  • Back to the Northern Irish border question - as someone brought up earlier, is there ANY support within Sinn Fein for having its MPs take the oath just to vote out the current government and vote in a coalition that would give the EU enough of what it wants to prevent a hard border in Ireland while letting Corbyn have whatever fig leaf he wants to claim that he got what he campaigned on on Brexit? The Sinn Fein MPs could then abstain on all future votes aside from votes of confidence if they wish.

    I know SF hard liners would be against it and SF leaders might want to stay out of Westminster politics so that they can keep blaming the bad guys in London and their DUP lackeys for all their woes but is there any chance that the above is discussed behind closed doors at Sinn Fein? Would the Troubles really be reignited if most or all Sinn Fein MPs took the oath in order to prevent a hard border?

    On a related note, would Corbyn, if PM, be willing to accept free movement of people if he can get enough control of the UK economy from the EU to do all the nationalization and most, if not all, of the other interventionist policies he wants to do? Would Brussels be willing to enable a version of soft Brexit that gave him that control? Would this version of a soft Brexit allow for no hard border for Ireland?

    Sorry to speculate so much on explosive topics as an outsider. Just curious what you think - especially those in Northern Ireland or in Ireland in general.
  • On a related note, would Corbyn, if PM, be willing to accept free movement of people if he can get enough control of the UK economy from the EU to do all the nationalization and most, if not all, of the other interventionist policies he wants to do?
    That's another thing I've never had a straight answer to. Since most other EU nations have nationalised infrastructure, why would there be a problem if a Labour government was to renationalise vital infrastructure? Where were the EU when the government partially nationalised some banks? If nationalisation is such a taboo for the EU surely they'd have said something?

    I've heard the claim that Labour wouldn't be allowed to renationalise railways etc within the EU, but never seen anything to support that claim. Is this like the passport colour, stories which ignore the facts (within the EU the UK was free to retain the old blue colour, and was not compelled to adopt the burgandy)?
  • I said reduce catch by 20% (arbitrary number), not reduce income by 20%. The trick is to devise a quota system whereby the costs of exceeding a lower quota are such that fishing to that quota is OK, but reaching the maximum threshold would be too high to risk.

    But when a fisherman is considering whether to make another trip, his decision isn't based on what he'll make this year and what he made last year, but on what he'll make if he catches more fish vs not catching more fish. His decision alone isn't going to alter the price of fish, so catching 80% of his quota does exactly mean making 80% of what he might otherwise have made.

    Sure, you can construct a quota system so that he starts paying penalties at 80% of max, and the penalties get very large when he hits 100% - but that's effectively a quota reduction.

    (I had understood that one problem with a catch quota was fishermen throwing back undesirable fish in order to remain under quota. "Thrown back" fish basically all die, so an ideal strategy wants to avoid this. That's why I was suggesting a limit on the amount of fishing that can be done, rather than the amount of fish that can be caught. Once a fish is caught, you want it to end up being sold on the dock.)
  • And, as I said, the price paid on the dock is part of the problem. If the only way to cover costs is for every boat to land the maximum amount of fish, and coming back with less than that means the skipper can't pay his crew properly or meet other costs then the price paid for fish is too low. Until that changes then any changes to the quota system is window dressing. The boat will need to maximise catches, to the quota and hope no one sees the excess being dumped (or accept the small fine), to find the richest schools of fish to fill the hold on each trip if you limit how many times a boat can go out.
  • I think Alan is spot on here:
    First you need to work out what a sustainable size of catch is, then you want to create an environment in which catching less than that is economically possible and exceeding the catch is hugely costly.

    That is not an unimaginable task in my view.

    AFZ

  • CrœsosCrœsos Shipmate
    But when a fisherman is considering whether to make another trip, his decision isn't based on what he'll make this year and what he made last year, but on what he'll make if he catches more fish vs not catching more fish. His decision alone isn't going to alter the price of fish, so catching 80% of his quota does exactly mean making 80% of what he might otherwise have made.

    But a quota system isn't reliant on "his decision alone", but has significant macroeconomic effects. Reducing the supply of fish available to the market will likely raise the price of fish. Not necessarily by the 25% needed to restore his income (I have no idea how price-elastic the demand for fish is), but if everyone is catching 80% of the fish they caught under the former system they'll be making somewhat more than "80% of what [ they ] might otherwise have made".
  • EirenistEirenist Shipmate
    But we are also assured that Brexit means we can import cheap food from all over the world.
  • Eirenist wrote: »
    But we are also assured that Brexit means we can import cheap food from all over the world.

    Of course - and if you willing to slash environmental and safety standards 'a very long way' then you'll be flooded with cheap farmed seafood from Indonesia/Thailand etc.

    There was an interesting series of graphs in the latest OBR report. This for instance this one here:

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/DY5HMgeWkAAsUPW.jpg

    At this point the 'conservative' forcecast is the net effect of trade on GDP in future will be close to 0. Autarky is not a great way of getting a balance of trade.
  • Eirenist wrote: »
    But we are also assured that Brexit means we can import cheap food from all over the world.
    With cheap fish from overseas to further depress prices and our fishermen won't need to worry about quotas. They'll never get a decent price for what they catch.

    Farmers will face similar problems, so lack of anyone to harvest crops won't be a problem either.
  • Mr SmiffMr Smiff Shipmate
    And suddenly it becomes clear: Brexit is going to deal with all our problems by trashing the economy. Genius!
  • Back to the Northern Irish border question - as someone brought up earlier, is there ANY support within Sinn Fein for having its MPs take the oath just to vote out the current government and vote in a coalition that would give the EU enough of what it wants to prevent a hard border in Ireland while letting Corbyn have whatever fig leaf he wants to claim that he got what he campaigned on on Brexit? The Sinn Fein MPs could then abstain on all future votes aside from votes of confidence if they wish.

    I know SF hard liners would be against it and SF leaders might want to stay out of Westminster politics so that they can keep blaming the bad guys in London and their DUP lackeys for all their woes but is there any chance that the above is discussed behind closed doors at Sinn Fein? Would the Troubles really be reignited if most or all Sinn Fein MPs took the oath in order to prevent a hard border?

    On a related note, would Corbyn, if PM, be willing to accept free movement of people if he can get enough control of the UK economy from the EU to do all the nationalization and most, if not all, of the other interventionist policies he wants to do? Would Brussels be willing to enable a version of soft Brexit that gave him that control? Would this version of a soft Brexit allow for no hard border for Ireland?

    Sorry to speculate so much on explosive topics as an outsider. Just curious what you think - especially those in Northern Ireland or in Ireland in general.

    It doesn’t suit Sinn Féin to tactically take its Westminster seats - that would be making the United Kingdom work for SF’s voters. Of course they should - but I don’t believe they will. Foyle’s (Derry) new SF MP, Elisha McCallion, is a particularly poor swap for the hard working and good Parliamentarian Mark Durkan from the SDLP. Mark marginally lost to the useless McCallion at the last election. In the meantime, I have had to go off Twitter etc for a few weeks as I have become heartily sick of explaining what a foul-up Brexit is for us on the Irish border, to those who refuse to either understand or listen to us.
  • TimTim Shipmate
    So today we discover that allegations have been made that the Leave campaign illegally went over campaign spending limits. This is just another in a long string of stories about how both sides broke the rules during the referendum...
  • That £625k has been questioned before.
  • Stonespring:
    Back to the Northern Irish border question - as someone brought up earlier, is there ANY support within Sinn Fein for having its MPs take the oath just to vote out the current government and vote in a coalition that would give the EU enough of what it wants to prevent a hard border in Ireland while letting Corbyn have whatever fig leaf he wants to claim that he got what he campaigned on on Brexit? The Sinn Fein MPs could then abstain on all future votes aside from votes of confidence if they wish.

    I know SF hard liners would be against it and SF leaders might want to stay out of Westminster politics so that they can keep blaming the bad guys in London and their DUP lackeys for all their woes but is there any chance that the above is discussed behind closed doors at Sinn Fein? Would the Troubles really be reignited if most or all Sinn Fein MPs took the oath in order to prevent a hard border?


    No. SF see all of this as a bit of gift in one sense. If this all goes to shit, they believe that it moves Northern Ireland closer to unification (and I actually think they are right from the Northern Ireland point of view, despite not personally wanting it; not now at least). From where they stand in the north that might be how it looks, but they omit one vitally important aspect, namely, Ireland.

    The DUP also see this as gift. It is an opportunity to get rid of, reverse and overturn that pesky document forged in the fire of comprise, dialogue and democracy: The Good Friday Agreement. The loss of that will I think, with almost 100% certainty, re-ignite the Troubles in the most horrific manner that I don't care to think on too long.

    So this is where we are at. SF taking the long view (as usual), well planned, probably about to tout Gerry Adams as Ireland's next President, very likely considering ditching Northern Ireland for a season to gain more power in Ireland. All this of course from the party that a mere fifteen years ago was profoundly anti-Europe because Europe was 'the big democratic liberal agenda' but who now know how to be populist in a manner that would put Trump, Le Penn and that fucking idiotic Boris in the shade (lately I might even include Corbin in this on the flip side). The DUP are just plain stupid, but dangerously stupid and currently backed by a lovely unsavoury little team that's a whole other level of stupid. They are likely to implode an entire province and really not give a shit because they will convince themselves it was someone else's fault and since they have cozied up in an utterly shameless way* with Northern Ireland's other idiotic and profoundly asshat team terrorists (let's not beat about the bush and just call them what they truly are) they will retain just enough influence through intimidation, fear and murder to keep their awful sham show on the road and wages in their pockets. Currently they are a mirror image of the 1950's Irish Catholicism but backed with intimidation, barbed wire bats and guns. I hate to think what they will be after the collapse. But who cares, right? Nobody; nobody gives two shits. Hell, the bastards are even propping up the Westminster government for the sake of another populist piece of bullshit - brexit. What a fucking joke.

    *Just in case you aren't familiar with the RHI scandal in 'mainland UK' only this week the Morrigan Foster sent out her hellish hounds to intimidate the civil servant into retracting every last sentence of his oath sworn statement that would have seen the bitch unravel. But hey, who cares, right? Yes, that's right - nobody. The people voted....or something.
  • Crœsos wrote: »
    But a quota system isn't reliant on "his decision alone", but has significant macroeconomic effects.

    Yes, of course.

    Alan has been bemoaning the fact that fishermen treat their quota as a target, and aim to catch exactly the quota. He would like them to catch 20% less than their quota and be happy.

    My claim is that that is never going to happen, and if you want fishermen to catch 20% less fish, you need to reduce the quotas by 20%. The only thing that will make fisherman A reduce his catch is some kind of assurance (such as a quota reduction) that all the other fishermen are also reducing their catch.

    And yes, I'd buy the claims that you could structure the quota/penalty system better, but any reduction in the total catch is ultimately going to be driven by a reduction in the quota.



  • Could commercial fishing take a lesson from sport fishing? For this you pay a license for your equipment (rod), a fee to fish (per day of season) and a fee to take fish (by type) up to a limit. Moreover equipment has to be precisely designed to take fish of a weight & type. That could be adjusted according to rate of catch but, with enforcement and monitoring we might still have fish in a hundred years

    If this is what we already have then don’t ignore me, just do it better. Thx
  • No. SF see all of this as a bit of gift in one sense. If this all goes to shit, they believe that it moves Northern Ireland closer to unification (and I actually think they are right from the Northern Ireland point of view, despite not personally wanting it; not now at least). From where they stand in the north that might be how it looks, but they omit one vitally important aspect, namely, Ireland.

    Do any people in SF see a kindred spirit in Corbyn, or at least someone they could work with to get a referendum on redrawing the border of NI or something along those lines? Would they be willing to take the oath to make him PM if that was part of the deal?
  • edited March 2018
    I very much doubt they would be willing to take the oath; that's been such a major sticking point. Stranger things have happened though. Whether they see Corbyn as a kindred spirit is also hard to say. They need the Northern Ireland Assembly to be up and working with them sitting in it in order to call a referendum - they don't need Corbyn to do that. A referendum would be about a united Ireland (oddly without truly knowing what the rest of Ireland might think about that) not a redrawing of the border. It suits the DUP to have the assembly remain collapsed and I'm sure they hope it will die. If it does, and the GFA goes with it, then we're back to the bad old days of Carson. As it is, it's a province held to ransom by an unelected party holding all the power and calling all the shots yet representing only around half of the populace. That alone will eventually stir discontent. May is happy for that to continue because she doesn't want yet another province under her party's watch holding a referendum about independence.
    Meanwhile we all discuss the price of fish.
  • Barnabas62Barnabas62 Purgatory Host, Dead Horses Host
    The soft border is going to scupper a lot of pious and non-pious hopes. Eire doesn't want a hard border. The DUP say they don't want a hard border. SF doesn't want any border. The UK government doesn't want a hard border. Brexit consequence is that we get the Norway solution for the foreseeable future. The Irish Question wins again.

    QED? Nobody will be happy. But nobody wants to bring back the troubles. The hard line Brexiteers will just have to bite on the bullet.
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