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 A NORMAL MAN
© BBC
TELLING IT LIKE IT IS
On a typically biased BBC Question Time last night, one man was the star.
Below we're showing you a clip from the programme from when a young Remainer asks a question. His argument is destroyed by Isabel Oakeshott who uses the question to lay into Nicky Morgan - one of the 'traitors' from the vote in Parliament on Wednesday evening.
The next question comes from the now-famous 'man in blue' who delivers a superb critique which a very large number of people will identify with. The entire sequence below lasts just four and a half minutes and we think its worth watching.
© BBC
When we feel like quitting, it's people like the 'man in blue' who keep us fighting on.
[ Sources: Twitter | BBC ]            13.30am, 15 December 2017
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 HERE’S THE EU ARMY
© EU Council
AND WE WANT A GROVELLING APOLOGY
“More than half a century ago, an ambitious vision of the European Defence Community was created...
“Today this dream becomes reality.”
- EU Council President Donald Tusk, Brussels, 14 Dec 2017
 
Please look carefully at the main photo above. It was taken yesterday in Brussels.
If you click the photo you will see the enlarged version. It comes from the EU itself and has not been doctored. It shows the leaders of 25 EU countries such as Frau Merkel and Monsieur Macron, unelected EU bureaucrats such as Presidents Tusk and Juncker, plus various military chiefs, in front of an enormous photo montage which is supposed to represent EU military power.
The photo was taken yesterday at a ceremony to celebrate the official launching of PESCO. PESCO is the so-called ‘Permanent Structured Collaboration’ – effectively a massive acceleration in the EU’s military ambitions, which we have reported on many times.
OBSERVATIONS
We have consistently said that the EU was planning its own ‘EU Army’ – a shorthand for saying that they were preparing their own common defence forces, common military command structures, and common budgets and procurement.
We also said that the EU plans to supplant NATO as the provider of defence capability in the EU sphere.
The first of these statements has already come true, as you can see above. The second is under way but is still being denied by the EU.
We remain deeply troubled that NATO’s Secretary General - who has been busy signing up to military agreements with the EU every few months - is Jens Stoltenberg, the ardent Europhile former Prime Minister of Norway and a former Communist. Twice he campaigned to persuade the Norwegian people to join the EU. Twice they rejected him. Now he runs NATO and he remains as much of an EU-fanatic as ever.
We were right about the EU Army and we stand by our claim that the EU plans to supplant NATO.
In recent years, pro-EU policians and commentators ridiculed people like us for saying that the EU was planning its own army. They didn’t just say we were wrong, they laughed in Leavers’ faces.
The most famous example of this was the famous TV debate between Nigel Farage and Nick Clegg in 2014, at the time of the last EU Parliament elections in the UK, in which UKIP came first.
Clegg is probably the worst offender and should be publicly humiliated at every opportunity. However we mustn’t forget that this was also official Remain campaign policy last year. Prime Minister Cameron and many others came out with the same nonsense.
In a perfect world, we would have Clegg, Cameron, and all the other inveterate pro-EU liars crawling on their hands and knees on national television and apologising profusely for deliberately misleading the public on such an important matter.
However we live in the real world, where people like that have no shame. All we can do is call them out continually and tell them they’re not fit to shine the boots of the most junior member of our armed forces.
(By the way, this makes us angry – can you tell?)
[ Sources: EU Council | EU Commission ]            06.55am, 15 December 2017
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 THIS IS YOUR
‘TRADE BLOC’
President Tusk yesterday, with 'best friend' Leo Varadkar from Republic of Ireland                   © EU Council
SUMMARY OF WHAT THE EU28 LEADERS
DISCUSSED AT YESTERDAY’S SUMMIT
Leaders discussed :
  1. ‘Security & Defence’
  2. the ‘Social Dimension’
  3. ‘Education & Culture’
  4. and ‘Climate Change’
Yesterday the 28 leaders of the EU member states, plus the unelected leaders of the EU Commission, met in Brussels to conduct their final Summit of the year. The formal conclusions were released at 6.30pm yesterday evening and we summarise these here:
OFFICIAL CONCLUSIONS
SECURITY & DEFENCE
  • Push to implement new joint defence projects under PESCO
  • Beefing up European Defence Fund
  • Revising ‘Athena’ common funding mechanism for EU military missions and operations
  • New initiative for ‘Capacity Building’ of EU military forces
  • Approves new EU-NATO joint projects
  • Pushes ahead on military ‘mobility’ – ability to move forces within the EU fast
  • Pushes ahead on ‘civilian’ aspects for common security and defence
SOCIAL DIMENSION
  • Fully implement European Pillar of Social Rights
  • Then a range of undefinable and incomprehensible social measures – see document
EDUCATION & CULTURE
  • Extend Erasmus+ programme
  • Create 20 ‘European Universities’
  • Create a ‘European Student Card’
  • Various new initiatives around EU-led skills and education programmes
CLIMATE CHANGE
  • Commitment to press on fast with COP Paris Agreement measures
  • Agreement to adopt climate change legislative proposals at EU-level
OTHER AGREEMENTS AND MRS MAY
Over dinner, the UK Prime Minister gave a short speech, stressing her wish to move to full trade talks as soon as possible. Whilst she was received warmly, statements from the EU continue to indicate that trade talks will not start any time soon. The earliest is thought to be next March.
Also in the course of the Summit, but not confirmed in the official conclusions from the first day, is the news that sanctions against Russia are to be continued, and the fact that Mrs May told the EU27 that the UK will stay in the Erasmus+ educational programme until at least 2020.
TRUMP AND ISRAEL SNUBBED
President Tusk also made a Twitter announcement on Jerusalem: “EU leaders reiterate firm commitment to the two-state solution and, in this context, the EU position on Jerusalem remains unchanged.”
OBSERVATIONS
ERASMUS+
A quick word about Erasmus+. Yesterday Mrs May apparently told the other EU27 leaders that the UK will stay in the EU's indoctrination and brainwashing programme called Erasmus+, until at least 2020. Why? This supposed education exchange project is deeply flawed in every way and the UK must on no account stay in it. We have explained why in great detail over the last couple of years, and will re-run our research for you soon.
If any MPs or journalists want to see our research, they are more than welcome, as with everything we produce.
TRADING OFF
In the supposed trading bloc which the UK joined 45 years ago, the 28 leaders talked of anything but trade.
In fact the only times that trade seems to have been mentioned were both negative occasions. The first was when Mrs May asked unsuccessfully for trade talks to begin between the EU and the UK. The second was when the EU leaders agreed to continue sanctions against Russia.
Let’s not forget that when the EU and Brexit are discussed by the usual ignorant ‘guests’ on TV – either politicians, journalists, or ‘commentators’ – they so often talk about the Single Market. It seems to dominate the conversation, despite the fact that very very few of these people seem to know the first thing about it.
And yet, when it comes to the final meeting of the year of the EU28 leaders, trade and the economy can’t make it onto the agenda. Nor can the persistent massive problem of youth unemployment which continues to deveastate lives of the EU’s young people.
Fig 1: Youth Unemployment Across the EU
Chart © Facts4EU.Org 2017
Instead they talked about :
  • Their huge plans to spend billions on a common EU defence force to rival NATO
  • Measures to ensure EU member states all start to have the same ‘social values and standards’
  • An expansion in the EU’s youth indoctrination programmes
  • And an increase in EU laws about climate change
IS THIS ANYTHING REMOTELY LIKE A TRADE BLOC?
To the 309 disgraces to democracy in Parliament, who failed to support the normal and efficient move to Brexit, (and not forgetting those who abstained), we simply ask if the EU on show yesterday is really what they want to be a part of?
Most members of the public who still quietly believe the UK should remain in the EU can be forgiven. They are victims of the continuing propaganda of the BBC, Sky News, ITN, Channel 4 News, and newspapers such as the Times, Financial Times, Guardian, etc.
Nevertheless, the numbers against the Brexit process are dropping, as some people see the evidence with their own eyes and stop believing the lies they are told. The latest YouGov poll on 11th December showed that only 15% of people thought that “the government should abandon Brexit completely and remain a member of the European Union”.
However when it comes to MPs and journalists, these people are supposed to know better. They are supposed to be very well informed. The majority aren't.
Our work does get picked up by mainstream journalists and by politicians, so it is worthwhile to keep pumping out the facts. We know it’s almost Christmas, but if you can help us with a small donation so that we can keep going, we would really appreciate it.
[ Sources: EU Council | EU Commission | YouGov ]            06.55am, 15 December 2017
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 WILL NO DEAL
MEAN NO BREXIT?
© UK Parliament
REMOANER MPs DEFY PUBLIC WILL
Last night in the House of Commons, an amendment to the EU Withdrawal Bill was passed by four votes, resulting in an important defeat for the government.
WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?
Putting aside all legalistic arguments from Remoaner lawyer-MPs, the amendment which was passed was designed to stop Brexit by insisting that the final terms be approved by Parliament. Whilst this sounds reasonable, in practice it means that Parliament can keep sending the Prime Minister back to negotiate with the EU, if for example there is no deal.
The government had already agreed that MPs would be given a final vote, but if there were no deal then the UK would leave the EU anyway. Now, the Prime Minister can be sent back to try again indefinitely. Naturally this contradicts the terms of Article 50, which states that the UK will leave two years after it is triggered, but Article 50 can of course be extended if the EU27 so wish.
WHO DID THIS?
The vote was passed by just four votes, with the Ayes on 309 and the Noes on 305. One Conservative MP voted for each side, the Speaker and his deputies don’t vote, and the seven Sinn Fein MPs don’t take their seats, so there were 24 abstentions from our calculations.
Fig 1: Voting with the government, for Brexit
Chart © Facts4EU.Org 2017
Fig 2: Voting against the government, anti-Brexit
Chart © Facts4EU.Org 2017
As you can see, it was the Labour Party (barring two MPs), the SNP, the Lib Dems, and the Welsh nationalists who were mainly responsible. However because they are in a minority, they couldn't have succeeded without a gaggle of rogue Tory Remoaner MPs.
THE DIRTY DOZEN - Names of the Conservative anti-Brexit MPs:
Below are the 12 Tory MPs who defied the whip last night and voted against the government.
OBSERVATIONS
If you want to know if this rebellion was about ‘Parliamentary sovereignty’ as the Remoaning MPs claim, or trying to stop Brexit, as we claim, take a look at the names of these MPs as a good indication. Every single one voted against Brexit last year and every one is a Remoaner.
Today the PM is in Brussels for the EU Summit. Tomorrow the EU27 leaders will approve the Phase One surrender agreed to by Mrs May last week. The disgraceful events in the House of Commons yesterday just make the PM’s position even weaker.
WHAT PARLIAMENTARY DEFICIT?
One after another, the remoaning lawyers in the House of Commons (of whom there are many) stood up to rail against some imagined form of democratic deficit caused by Brexit. This would be funny if it weren't serious.
Some of us have watched for decades as our emasculated MPs were forced to take whatever absurd rules and laws the unelected EU Commission thrust at the UK. They absorbed these into UK law without a debate and without so much as a whimper.
What is even more extraordinary is that ever since the Referendum there appears to have been a parliamentary focus on Brexit to the exclusion of almost everything else. Barely a day goes by, it seems, but that Parliament isn't considering some aspect of Brexit. To give just one example, yesterday was announced in Hansard as "European Union (Withdrawal) Bill - Committee stage (day 7) - Committee of the whole House". Note: 'day 7'. And that's just this particular bill.)
REBELS WITHOUT A CAUSE
These MPs who are still forced to do Brussels' bidding at this very moment, were yesterday standing up shamelessly pretending that what they were saying about the Withdrawal Bill had the remotest connection with democracy.
They should all be thoroughly ashamed of themselves. They should also all be deselected by their constituency parties. These people care not one jot for democracy and what the people want. Instead they preen and posture – proselytising peacocks who cannot accept that they were wrong last year, because of their arrogance and their fear of losing face.
'The Dirty Dozen' - A Rump of Tory Remoaners
Gallery by Brexit Facts4EU.Org 2017
A FEW TORY REBELS - BUT MOSTLY LABOUR, SNP & LIB DEMS
In all the talk today of a dozen Conservative rebels, let’s not forget who really defeated the government last night. Look again at the graphs above. The vast majority of those voting against a normal Brexit were the hypocritical Scottish Nationalists, the bleating Lib Dems, and almost the entirety of confused Labour.
From Labour, only the brave Kate Hoey (give that woman a medal) and Frank Field went through the lobby with the heroes from the right, such as John Redwood, Owen Paterson, David Jones, and Jacob Rees-Mogg.
For newer readers, we will state again that Brexit Facts4EU.Org adopts a party-neutral stance. We only comment on party political matters when it relates to Brexit.
In the case of parliamentary proceedings last night, we can say that without the vast bulk of the Conservative Party, the entirety of the Democratic Unionist Party, and two Labour MPs, Brexit would be lost completely. Parliament remains a Remainer fiefdom.
BREXIT – THE SECOND COMING
If you would like a wider political prediction for a change, we have been concerned for some time that the shock of Brexit has faded for most Remainer politicians and Establishment figures. We believe that many now just see the Referendum as a setback and that normal service can gradually be resumed, as they start to ‘put it right’ for us.
Well, we have a sneaky feeling that there will be a second major revolt against the Establishment. The genie came out of the bottle on June 23rd last year. If Brexit is not delivered in the basic, common sense way in which people voted for it, we believe that ordinary people will start to lose their patience.
To be honest, none of the Brexit Facts4EU.Org team are the types to engage in civil disobedience, even peacefully. However some of us are now beginning to wonder if the eventual fight for the restoration of democracy to the United Kingdom may in the end require more from us than just writing about it.
[ Sources: UK Parliament | Hansard ]            06.35am, 14 December 2017
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Name: : Steve R, London      Date/Time: 14 Dec 2017, 8.52pm
Message: Thanks for that Michael. Dead right. I would like to see a split of loyal MPs from Cons and Labour to form an alliance of Conservatives and Labour for Independence which would agree not to oppose each other in marginal seats. They would have time to plan and get the local associations to plan and have loyal candidates ready. Most Labour friends of mine have views very similar to old politicians. There is not a lot between the 2 sides. What both dislike is Communists and crooked big business. They would wipe the floor and attract most kippers. Maybe form an alliance with kippers too.
Name: : Michael Wood, UK      Date/Time: 14 Dec 2017, 11.06am
Message: As Attorney General and MP Dominic Grieve supinely accepted that the European Communities Act 1972 (ECA) allowed EU regulations to be imposed on us without discussion or vote and the same is true of EU Directives. Having ignored parliamentary sovereignty for 40 years it is beyond hypocritical of the rebels to claim it concerns them now. Those who refuse to accept the referendum result are wrong. They should resign and offer themselves for re-election on an Anti-Democracy platform, but honesty is not compatible with their religious commitment to the EU.
With the honourable exception of Kate Hoey and Frank Field the Labour party is guilty of a massive betrayal of its own supporters. In thrall to multi-millionaire property speculator and Marxist Jon Lansman it knows that nothing in its proposed agenda can be achieved while we are members of the EU, however disruption and undermining democracy was always a Communist method of achieving power and Lansman’s puppets are following the script. The fact that this cabal can lead Labour MPs by the nose is an existential threat to democracy.
Sovereignty belongs to the people not to parliamentarians, but it seems they need reminding who is sovereign in this country. I urge that everyone should put aside their party allegiance and at every opportunity only vote for a candidate who accepts that they support our independence as a nation and the restoration of respect for our sovereign will.
Name: : cs2011, Devizes, UK      Date/Time: 14 Dec 2017, 10.38am
Message: That traitor Grieve says that he wants to achieve an orderly Brexit following due process, but I think he may well have actually ensured the opposite. Given that under Article 50 rules, we will leave the EU in March 2019, we could end up in legal no-mans land, where we are out of the EU, but still having to adhere to EU laws.
Name: : Beenzie, Blackpool      Date/Time: 14 Dec 2017, 09.47am
Message: The trouble with you lot is that you moan about democracy and then when MPs defend it you attack. You should make up your mind what you want. Not too late to change your minds!
Name: : John Finn, UK      Date/Time: 14 Dec 2017, 09.29am
Message: I made this point at the time of the election and I've made it several times since. Once Theresa May failed to secure a decent majority Brexit was at risk. You can blame the 12 Tory "remoaners" all you want but the fact is 247 Labour MPs voted against the government. The idea that this shower were in any way supportive of Brexit is laughable.
Name: : Steve, UK      Date/Time: 14 Dec 2017, 09.22am
Message: When you see MP's acting like this it will only anger people, and it gives the impression that they are preventing democracy. I hope this does not lead to violence.
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 TODAY IN PARLIAMENT....
NO, NOT THAT ONE,
THE ONE IN BRUSSELS
The EU Parliament will today debate their motion approving the Phase One agreement which was made on Friday with the EU Commission.
WATCH LIVE NOW
BACKGROUND
 
The parliament’s Brexit Steering group (BSG), chaired by the Belgian Guy Verhofstadt has tabled a draft resolution welcoming the joint progress report presented by EU and UK negotiators on 7 December and recommending that the EU27 heads of state or government decide on Friday that “sufficient progress” has indeed been made.
Yesterday however, Verhofstadt also tabled two amendments stressing the need for negotiating in good faith following recent “comments like those by David Davis”. The resolution also notes that tough issues remain to be resolved before the withdrawal agreement can be finalised. The vote will take place at noon and you can watch the debate here.
One of the amendments even singles out David Davis by name and without using his title:
“whereas comments such as those made by David Davis, calling the outcome of phase 1 of the negotiations a mere ‘statement of intent’, risk undermining the good faith that has been built during the negotiations;”
There are other amendments that have been tabled, including ones by Gerard Batten MEP which are designed to protect to the UK, but it is inevitable that none of these will succeed.
No amendments have been tabled by any British Conservative, Labour, LibDem or Green MEPs.
On the assumption that the resolution is passed, the next step takes place on Friday when the leaders of the EU27 countries will discuss the Phase One agreement at the Summit. The Summit starts tomorrow, but Mrs May will leave tomorrow evening to allow the other leaders to talk without her presence the following day.
OBSERVATIONS?
Please send us your comments and we will publish them below. You can of course use a pseudonym if you prefer, and it's always nice to know roughly where you're writing from. Please always state the headline of the article you're commenting on.
[ Sources: EU Parliament ]            06.55am, 13 December 2017
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 WHAT THE EU
DEMANDS OF THE UK
SUMMARY OF LATEST EU POSITIONS
1.  PHASE ONE AGREEMENT
The so-called ‘Phase One’ agreement was reached on Friday between Theresa May and Jean-Claude Juncker. This addresses the only three issues which the EU has been prepared to talk about: the EU’s demand for money, the Irish border, and citizens’ rights.
Since it was agreed in principle, the Phase One agreement has been the subject of differing interpretations – by the EU, by the British government and establishment, and by Brexiteers. There have also been different views as to how binding it is.
David Davis upset the Irish and the EU on Sunday when he said the agreement was “a statement of intent” rather than “a legally enforceable thing”. He was subsequently forced to recant.
The latest news on this comes from EU Chief Negotiator Michel Barnier in a statement yesterday, when he said:
“We will not accept any backtracking from the UK on commitments in the Joint Report. All our points of agreement are now closed.”
Statement, Tues 12 Dec 2017
 
‘Joint Report’ is what the EU call the Phase One agreement. The statement by Barnier appears to be as categorical as it could possibly be.
2.  WITHDRAWAL AGREEMENT
The EU Parliament motion and amendments on which there will be a debate today, says that the UK has :
“accepted that all EU citizens legally residing in the UK … and their respective family members at the time of withdrawal, will enjoy the full set of rights as established in EU law and interpreted by the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU)”.
They are clear that EU laws will have supremacy. Incidentally, they also stress that :
“all social security rights under EU law will be maintained. This includes the export of all exportable benefits.”
 
This is actually worse than the minimal achievement of David Cameron when he negotiated ‘concessions’ prior to the Referendum. The EU then agreed that the export of child benefit would be phased out over four years.
This was part of what Jacob Rees-Mogg MP referred to in Parliament at the time as being “thin gruel”.
3.  TRANSITION PERIOD
On the transition period, EU Council President Donald Tusk said on Friday:
“The UK has asked for a transition of about two years, while remaining part of the Single Market and Customs Union. And we will be ready to discuss this, but naturally, we have our conditions. I propose that during this period, the UK will respect:
  • the whole of EU law, including new law;
  • it will respect budgetary commitments;
  • it will respect judicial oversight;
  • and of course, all the related obligations.
So, for the EU Council, the Transition Period means staying in the Single Market and Customs Union, staying under ECJ jurisdiction, and obeying all existing obligations.
Likewise the EU Parliament is clear about the Transition Period. They say the conditions will:
“consist of the prolongation of the EU acquis, including rights of citizens, thereby requiring that the existing EU regulatory, budgetary, supervisory, judicial and enforcement instruments and structures continue to apply to the UK; notes that the UK will no longer be part of the EU institutions and bodies;
“Affirms that any changes to the EU acquis which take effect during the transitional period must apply automatically to the UK in accordance with the transitional arrangements agreed between the EU and the UK;
“Insists that any future trade agreements that the UK negotiates post-withdrawal with third countries may only come into force at the end of the period during which transitional arrangements apply;”
In other words, there will be no change from being a full member of the EU except perhaps in name, and in the fact that the UK will no longer have a vote on anything.
4.  FUTURE TRADING RELATIONSHIP / AGREEMENT
The argument currently being advanced by the government in Parliament is that the Phase 1 agreement which Mrs May flew home with on Friday - and which the EU Council should sign off on in two days’ time - is conditional on there being an acceptable trade agreement. We have been told that the deal is off if there is no trade deal. Unfortunately there are unanswerable problems with this argument.
Firstly, the EU says that the Withdrawal Agreement must be signed before there is any meaningful trade agreement in a form that can be judged by the UK.
The EU Parliament says that any broad agreements on a trade deal can only be in :
“the form of a political declaration annexed to the Withdrawal Agreement”.
It goes on to re-confirm that the trade deal
“can only be formally negotiated once the UK has left the EU and is a third country.”
The EU Parliament then lays down strict conditions on this trade deal. The MEPs insist that a trade deal must adhere to a list of principles, which include:
  • protection of the integrity of the internal market and the four freedoms, without allowing for a sector-by-sector approach;
  • autonomy of the EU’s decision-making;
  • safeguarding the EU legal order and the role of the CJEU;
  • the UK’s adherence to the standards provided by international obligations, including fundamental rights, and the Union’s legislation and policies in the fields of the environment, climate change, consumer protection, the fight against tax evasion and avoidance, fair competition, data protection and privacy, trade, and social and workers’ rights, especially safeguards against social dumping, with a clear enforcement mechanism to ensure compliance;
  • safeguarding of EU agreements with third countries and organisations, including the EEA Agreement;
  • safeguarding of the financial stability of the EU and compliance with its regulatory and supervisory regime and standards and their application,
  • a correct balance of rights and obligations, including commensurate financial contributions;
Without analysing each item above and to take only one example: The EU is insisting that the UK’s “legislation and policies” must be the same as the EU’s. This will include areas such as the UK’s tax rates. The EU expects to be able to control what the UK can do in its drive to be competitive on the world stage. It wants the UK to have the same restrictive practices which are steadily making so many parts of the EU’s economies uncompetitive.
It is also worth mentioning that the EU is also imposing conditions on matters which don’t relate to trade or the Withdrawal Agreement. These include things like defence:
“Whatever the outcome of the negotiations on the future relationship, there cannot be any trade-off between internal and external security, including defence cooperation, on the one hand, and the future economic relationship on the other hand”
OBSERVATIONS
SUMMARY OF WITHDRAWAL, TRANSITION, AND FUTURE TRADE DEAL POSSIBILITIES
In essence, the above is so far from what the UK could possibly agree to as a properly independent country, it is possible to say now that - as things stand - no normal trade deal can be agreed with the EU.
Another way of putting the above is to say that the EU’s overall mindset must be challenged now. If they still hold to their views after some very robust questioning, then it really is essential for the UK to walk away now and apply itself fully to the provisioning of everything necessary for an exit on WTO terms.
We would like to stress something. In looking at what the various branches of the EU are saying now about the EU’s relationships with the UK going forward – in the ‘Transition Period’ and in the supposed future trade deal – we are not talking about small elements where some compromises might be possible.
We’re talking about the mindset of an alien culture. No negotiation on individual line items will ever succeed against a brick wall of ideas which are so absurd they simply can’t be entertained in any form.
It is not good enough, in our opinion, for the EU to keep saying what it will and will not negotiate at different points. They should now be challenged on the essential elements of the withdrawal, transition, and future trade agreements. The UK can then decide if it wishes to walk away.
We will continue to present information for you to make up your own minds about this.
Please send us your comments and we will publish them below. You can of course use a pseudonym if you prefer, and it's always nice to know roughly where you're writing from. Please always state the headline of the article you're commenting on.
[ Sources: EU Council | EU Parliament | EU Commission ]            06.55am, 13 December 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: : Carole, UK      Date/Time: 13 Dec 2017, 10.00am
Message: Just been listening to the Brexit Negotiations Debate and they actually think that the Withdrawal Agreement part is over - that Phase I was actually the whole thing. I was utterly stunned.
Name: : W Alkaway, UK      Date/Time: 13 Dec 2017, 09.44am
Message: Do the terms of Phase 1 equate with the Leave Vote? NO We did not vote to be tied in to ANY EU controls. The Prime Minister cannot please all of the people all of the time. Remainer MPs must toe the line of the Public's wishes, not their own. It's called DEMOCRACY. The Public WILL have the final say; we still have The Vote at the next Election. UKIP will, I predict, win a huge majority unless Ms May and Team give us that clean break and a Golden Future.
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 WHEN WILL REMOANERS
RECOGNISE REALITY?
25 YEARS OF A SHRINKING EU
How the EU’s share of the world economy
has shrunk by over 1/3rd in 25 years
A BREXIT FACTS4EU.ORG SUMMARY
  • EU27’s share of world economic output: 18.3% in 2016
  • In 25 years, EU’s share of world output, excluding UK, has fallen from 29.1%
  • From 29% to 18% represents a 37% fall in the EU’s percentage share
  • This is despite the EU more than doubling from 12 to 28 member states in 25 years
  • Last year, the world outside the EU27 represented 81.7% of world output, and growing
                            Chart © Brexit Facts4EU.Org 2017
25 YEARS SINCE MAASTRICHT TREATY WAS SIGNED
A year ago, EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker visited a small Dutch border town called Maastricht. He did so because it was there, 25 years earlier, that a Treaty was first drafted which defined the direction of the EU.
At Maastricht, it was decided that the EEC (European Economic Community) would become the European Union. They changed from pretending to be a trading bloc to being what they were always intended to be by their founders: a political project to subsume all European countries into one giant superstate.
So it was that a year ago Jean-Claude Juncker decided to revisit Maastricht, in homage to the place where the Maastricht Treaty was drafted which would enable the European Union to come into being nearly two years later, on 1st November 1993.
THE SPEECH
In a typically rambling and unstructured speech, Mr Juncker made some astonishing admissions :-
  • “We are a relevant part of the global economy: 25% of the global GDP”
  • “In 10 years from now, it will be 15%”
  • “Europe is the smallest continent... 5.5 million square kilometres.”
  • “And from a demographic point of view… we are losing weight”.
  • “So those who do think that time has come to deconstruct, to put Europe in pieces, to subdivide us in national divisions, are totally wrong. We won't exist as single nations without the European Union.”
In fact Juncker got his facts wrong, as usual. At the time he made his speech, the EU28 (including the UK) represented 21.8% not 25% of world GDP. It was even less, at 16.9%, if using the PPP method of calculating this.
In our graph above we have excluded the UK from the EU figures, because we’re looking at the picture as if the UK were on the outside. The GDP figures are from the IMF’s official WEO database and were calculated using current value data.
OBSERVATIONS
IT’S A DATE?
Have you ever noticed how the EU seems able to celebrate the same thing about three times on three different anniversary dates? This is because of the cumbersome decision-making structure of the EU, and also because the EU likes to keep celebrating things it thinks people approve of.
In the case of the Maastricht Treaty, once again the EU has three dates to celebrate. There is the date of the EU Council meeting at which the first drafts were undertaken: 10th December 1991. This is the date which Juncker decided to commemorate with his ‘25th anniversary speech’. Then there is the date that the Maastricht Treaty was signed: 7th February 1992. And then there is the date it came into force: 1st November 1993.
CARROT AND STICK
In that speech a year ago, President Juncker was still reeling from the UK’s Referendum result and was doing everything possible to keep ‘the project’ on track. This has always comprised a carrot and stick approach.
The carrot is “Just look at this progress. Everything in the garden is lovely.” This explains the constant propaganda the EU produces which is normally either wrong or wildly distorted. It is this which we have to combat on a weekly basis.
The stick is “Ooh look, it’s a cold hard world out there. Your country is puny and you must accept being swallowed into the much more powerful EU or you’ll be in big trouble.”
Part of the ‘stick’ approach is sometimes to state how even when inside the EU, things will be tough. This is the approach Juncker used a year ago. He wanted to scare everyone that individual member states simply can’t survive on their own in the future.
REMOANERS NEED TO RECOGNISE REALITY
Remoaners continue to fight the Referendum as if they hadn’t already lost it. Worse still, they continue to trot out the same tired and inaccurate information that they did during the campaign last year. (That’s a polite way of saying they’re still lying.)
We’re never going to get the worst culprits to admit they’re wrong, that much is clear. What we must do, however, is combat their nonsense each and every day. Each of us, in our own way, has a part to play.
The next time you hear someone saying that we “can’t afford to be outside the EU as we need to be part of something big”, you could gently point out that in the last 25 years the EU has lost almost 40% of its share of the world’s economic output.
You could add that the EU27’s share is down to 18.3%, and falling.
If you’re told that this is rubbish, tell them these are the official figures from the IMF and World Bank.
And if that still doesn’t work, tell them that it was the IMF that George Osborne and the Remain campaign were calling as references at the time they were giving their economic Armageddon projections....
HUSBANDS AND WIVES
We don’t have wives or husbands who are hedge fund managers, we’re not part of any political party, and no big business interests seem to be interested in us. It’s only you, dear reader, who keeps us fighting for a clean Brexit.
Someone has to produce great info like that above, which will then be repeated by those who might have the 'name' but who somehow never seem to do the work. We don’t care about that. We just want to ensure the facts get out there, however that happens.
Please send us your comments and we will publish them below. You can of course use a pseudonym if you prefer, and it's always nice to know roughly where you're writing from. Please always state the headline of the article you're commenting on.
[ Sources: IMF WEO tables | EU Commission ]            05.15am, 12 December 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: : Sally T, UK      Date/Time: 12 Dec 2017, 3.16pm
Message: It's a simple fact the EU's importance has been reducing over time as developing countries' growth rates have far exceeded those of more established economies. Added to that, the strictures of the Eurozone have held back some EU economies, like Italy, Greece, etc. Then you have all the smaller EU countries whose economies were tiny in the first place. Despite all this, Remainers seem to think the EU is huge and is such an important part of global trade. The truth is that we'll be looking outwards at all the fasting growing areas of the world, as well as doing more business with the anglosphere. As you mentioned on Twitter, the trend really is our friend!
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 WTO RULES, OK?
                            © WTO
164 NATIONS MEET TO TALK TRADE
The Eleventh Ministerial Conference of the World Trade Organisation opened in Buenos Aires last night. The plenary sessions start today and will run until 13 December 2017.
The Brexit Facts4EU.Org team will monitor events and bring you a summary of anything interesting to the Brexit cause. In the meantime, we thought you might like the chart below.
                            Chart © Brexit Facts4EU.Org 2017
Please send us your comments and we will publish them below. You can of course use a pseudonym if you prefer, and it's always nice to know roughly where you're writing from. Please always state the headline of the article you're commenting on.
            07.05am, 11 December 2017
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 ‘JUNCKER YOUTH’
IS ONE
                            © EU Commission
EU’s sinister “European Solidarity Corps”
had its first birthday last week
The oddly named “European Solidarity Corps” is the EU's new youth arm, started one year ago by the EU Commission.
By the numbers:
  • Current target for members: 100,000 by 2020
  • 42,745 young people have already signed up
  • New target for members: 1.5 million young people by 2025
  • Current proposed budget: €341.5 million
  • Next proposed budget: €6 billion from 2021
This new EU youth organisation requires allegiance :
  • Membership is open to all EU citizens under the age of 30
  • “The European Solidarity Corps will in the first place be based on the value of solidarity”
  • Members are required to sign up to its ‘mission’
  • Members must “declare their engagement and willingness to undertake solidarity-minded activities”
What this new Corps does :
  • Members will be deployed across borders : “Members of the Corps could be deployed in their home country or in another EU Member State”
  • “Rebuilding communities following natural disasters; addressing social challenges such as social exclusion, poverty, health and demographic challenges; or working on the reception and integration of refugees”
  • Example : “A young Greek social worker from Athens takes up a job offer to work in a refugee reception centre in Thessaloniki. He will join forces for the next eight months with a team of psychologists, social workers and teachers, to help refugee children adjust to their new reality. He will receive a net monthly salary as well as a monthly allowance.”
This isn’t ‘volunteering’, it's paid for by the taxpayer :
  • Members receive a salary and living allowances, paid via the EU
  • Part-time members receive a minimal salary, plus living and travelling allowances
Echoes of where this kind of thing went in the past:
   
OBSERVATIONS
We find this new organisation deeply troubling. Just stop and think for a moment. What is its purpose?
It has none, other than to indoctrinate still further the young people of the European Union. The activities it purports to undertake are already undertaken at country level, without any need for the EU to be involved.
And why on earth does it need a ‘mission’ that all members must sign up to? Why does it force its members to engage in ‘solidarity-minded activities’?
Facts4EU.Org has consistently campaigned against this sinister organisation since it was first mooted a few years ago. The mainstream media don't seem to be interested.
Maybe they will start to get interested when they see that the EU Commission is proposing an increased budget of €6 billion from 2021. Don't forget, this organisation is already consuming money and that money is coming from British taxpayers, as the UK is the second-highest net contributor to EU funds.
If the EU cut out indoctrination projects like this, it wouldn't have the need to demand such an enormous ransom payment from the UK.
Please send us your comments and we will publish them below. You can of course use a pseudonym if you prefer, and it's always nice to know roughly where you're writing from. Please always state the headline of the article you're commenting on.
            06.05am, 11 December 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: : Norman C, UK      Date/Time: 11 Dec 2017, 1.58pm
Message: Been there before. We have been here before, remember the Hitler Youth? Are we going to have to dig Europe out again? Will we be at war with Europe in the not too distant future?
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 POUND RISES
+9% THIS YEAR
Brexit currency confounds doomsayers
Occasionally we look at general economic indicators to keep you informed. Below is the progress of the pound against the dollar this year.
                            © xe.com
GBP / USD THIS YEAR
  • From 01 Jan 2017 to date (11 Dec)
  • The pound has risen by 9%
 
OBSERVATIONS
Last week we showed you how UK exports have grown by 16% in the year to Sept. Above you can see that the pound has been on a long rise against the dollar since the start of the year.
Positive news with which to start the week!
Please send us your comments and we will publish them below. You can of course use a pseudonym if you prefer, and it's always nice to know roughly where you're writing from. Please always state the headline of the article you're commenting on.
            04.55am, 11 December 2017
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 “OUTCOME EQUIVALENCE”
AND OTHER NONSENSE
The EU-UK Phase 1 Agreement
Over the weekend there was no agreement in the UK, EU, or Republic of Ireland as to what the EU-UK Phase 1 agreement means.
OBSERVATIONS
We do not propose to waste much time on the continued talk about what Mrs May agreed in Brussels last week.
Over the weekend, a variety of British politicians from all sides desperately played with words in attempts to show that their interpretation of the Prime Minister’s Phase 1 agreement with the EU was correct. In the Republic of Ireland and in the EU, the same process was under way.
The interpretations are contradictory and clearly they can’t all be right.
We stand by our original assessment that the agreement is a betrayal of the 17.4 million people who voted to leave the European Union. It doesn’t matter that the sell-out may be overtaken by events and may never materialise. As things stand it is our opinion that the government has sold out on various fundamental red lines of Brexit.
After watching Secretary of State David Davis MP once again chuckling his way through a Marr interview yesterday, and forcing words to mean things they clearly didn’t mean, we will just restate our view.
The EU will never agree anything remotely sensible or reasonable in any final deal. All that will happen is that we will all waste huge amounts of time and effort. Ministers can say what they like. The EU will just do what it wants, and that’s to punish the United Kingdom.
Once again, here’s the link to the document that was agreed. We know the way in which the EU are (and will be) interpreting it, and it’s their version that matters. You may want to read the document yourselves and make up your own mind what you think it means.
Our message to all parties is simple: stop messing around with words and expressions, and stop playing politics with people's lives and money. If there’s going to be a row let’s have it now and get it done with. Confront the issues and accept that we’re never going to agree with the EU. Then we can all start planning for the future as it will be, rather than as some people hope it might be.
Politicians should stop playing – the rest of us have real lives to get on with.
Please send us your comments and we will publish them below. You can of course use a pseudonym if you prefer, and it's always nice to know roughly where you're writing from. Please always state the headline of the article you're commenting on.
            03.45am, 11 December 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: : William, Hove, UK      Date/Time: 11 Dec 2017, 10.47am
Message: Brexit fudged / alleged agreement. Do they think the British people are stupid ? Theresa May is the 21st century version of Neville Chamberlain
Name: : AMB, London      Date/Time: 11 Dec 2017, 09.24am
Message: I agree. I've listened out particularly for the comments of Parliament's Brexiteers, who if they disagree with it say that the words are meaningless & it won't happen. What I'm hearing is platitudes. It all reminds me of Kaa the snake in the Jungle Book - Trust in me. What seriously concerns me is if any form of deal is agreed, this mess of an agreement will come into being. Who is the arbiter of EU rules & whether they are complied with, as to whether 'full alignment' is achieved/being maintained? The CJEU. My only hope is that if businesses need certainty by March, and nothing will now commence until February, any agreement is unlikely. Given that the remainers are now running the negotiations, with DD no more than a Brexiteer figurehead to keep us quiet I pray for, but don't believe, that an announcement of WTO will happen in March. We need a campaign to push for no deal, as that is better than what is currently on offer & would be part of whatever is agreed. We also need to open people's eyes as to the end state of the USofE. Even Cable has said that it's a red line, but like the army it is a 'fantasy'. Still very, very angry.
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