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BREXIT NEWS 16-30 NOV 2017  
 COLLECTIVE CABINET IRRESPONSIBILITY
MASS OUTBREAK OF INSANITY
IN WESTMINSTER
"HM Government dancing to the tune of the European Commission"                        © Parliament
Yesterday it emerged that the Cabinet has given its approval for a dramatic increase in the UK’s response to the EU’s blackmail demand.
Figures were bandied back and forth all day on the media, with the consensus seeming to be that an ‘in principle’ agreement has been reached with the EU to pay them around £40-50bn on top of the usual net annual contributions for the next several years.
We must stress that the information came from No.10 in unofficial and unattributable briefings to the mainstream media, under the lobby system. The information is therefore not tittle-tattle, and it’s surprising that there remains ambiguity over the actual amounts being talked about. Nevertheless, the BBC’s political editor reported ‘£40-50bn’ at lunchtime.
WHAT BARNIER SAID
In the next article we show what Monsieur Barnier said yesterday, and why it makes Mrs May's apparent capitulation to the EU look like even more foolish than you had already thought.
First though, we look briefly at what was said in Parliament about the Brexit blackmail bill, or EU divorce demand.
URGENT QUESTION IN HOUSE OF COMMONS
An urgent question was tabled in the House yesterday, by Blairite Labour MP and arch-Remoaner Chris Leslie. This is the closest we got to any formal information from the government about one of the biggest payments ever agreed in principle by a British government to a foreign power, without having any detail of what it would buy.
Below is the urgent question and reply. It was Treasury Chief Secretary Elizabeth Truss who was wheeled out to face the music.
© Parliament
It is clear that many Tory MPs are horrified by Mrs May’s latest capitulation. We understand that serious talks are taking place within the membership of the Conservative ‘European Research Group’ which contains most pro-Brexit Tory MPs. In public, several backbench MPs went as far as they could, as you can see in the video above.
With regard to the front bench, Boris Johnson was his usual shambolic self yesterday, and was hardly a hero around whom any Brexiteer might want to gather. Speaking from Africa where he is attending the EU-Africa Summit he said:
“We’ve been waiting for this for a long time – 18 months or so. Now is the moment to get the ship off the rocks and move it forwards.”
The Foreign Secretary                                        © Sky News
OBSERVATIONS
Boris may be in Africa, but he may as well be on Jupiter, so out of touch is he with Brexit feeling in the UK. This was extremely disappointing, to say the least.
Next we will do something we don’t usually do, and quote another journalist. There are many Brexit sites which spend their time repeating things from the mainstream media and telling you what you can read anywhere. Facts4EU.Org exists to bring you original research and facts, together with analysis that isn’t copied from Twitter.
The mainstream media journalist's name is Quentin Letts and he writes for the Daily Mail. Many readers will be familiar with his sharp wit. Here is what he wrote about yesterday’s ‘Urgent Question’ in the House:
“At last, the country is starting to realise how much the EU has been costing us for years. In all the time I have been a parliamentary sketchwriter, I do not recall a single Urgent Question or serious vote on the annual handing-over of billions to Brussels. It always just went through on the nod, Government MPs from the ruling party of the day meekly trooping through the lobbies at the behest of the Whips. Where were the spending-conscious Blairites then?”
Well said, Quentin. We’ve reproduced that because it’s important to expose the daily hypocrisy from flocks of Remoaners who never questioned all the huge payments going to Brussels nor EU laws being imposed on Parliament for over 40 years, and yet who now bleat about Parliamentary scrutiny and sovereignty. Give us a break.
As for the Prime Minister, well Theresa, you just don’t get it. In fact you’re so far from getting it that there’s barely any point addressing anything to you.
Nevertheless we have written a letter to you, which we intend to publish unless there is some serious rethinking on your part.
YOUR VIEWS
We hardly have to ask what our readers think of the latest offer from Mrs May to settle the extortion demands of the EU, but we will. We receive many emails which are not for publication, which we appreciate. However please send us something we can publish 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: Hansard | Parliament TV | Sky | BBC | Daily Mail ]            06.25am, 30 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: : AMB, London      Date/Time: 30 Nov 2017, 8.44pm
Message: I don't know how many times that we have to say this. We voted to leave the EU, to regain sole control of our laws, borders, territory,economy & governance. Any 'deal' MUST be better than our default WTO position which gives us ALL that we voted for, or it is not a better deal. It is already clear that whatever May is coming up with, and has agreed so far, is already a 'bad deal' compared to WTO quite apart from the money that she's promising to borrow to hand over when there is no legal basis, let alone an itemised bill of these 'liabilities'. Meanwhile, the EU have not budged from their main requirement - that we remain under their laws & control, a vassel state that is merely a cash cow to continue their project. May, having 'taken personal charge' has (seemingly deliberately) refuses to stand up for her country and it's becoming an embarrassment how she hands over all our strong negotiating cards, accepts being regularly being humiliated, and dances to this evil totalitarian regime. We need to walk away, and counter the EU propaganda...
Name: Carole, Liverpool, UK      Date/Time: 30 Nov 2017, 11.38am
Message: One can only hope that the capitulation is dependent on a full trade deal being mapped out by 2019, and a true implementation period. Clutching at straws, I know but I don't like giving up.
Name: Denis Cooper, Berks      Date/Time: 30 Nov 2017, 10.12am
Message: Quentin Letts is spot on. Suddenly we find that on top of the published payments into the EU budget year after year we have also been quietly accumulating massive liabilities year after year. Remoaners point the finger at Leave campaigners for not mentioning these liabilities but the same and more could be said about the Remain campaigners, and especially about the government which must have known about them but said nothing at all in its official Remain leaflet delivered to every household at a cost to the public purse of £9.3 million. Why not? Perhaps a Commons committee should get David Cameron and George Osborne along to explain why they decided to keep quiet about this fact rather than present it as another strong argument for voting to stay in the EU. Could it be because “Although the government has only ever told you about the benefits of EU membership part of the flip side is that ever since we joined in 1973 we have been accumulating massive debts, which could be as high as £100 billion, which we will have pay off if you vote to leave” did not seem a convincing proof of the merits of EU membership?
Name: Paul A, UK      Date/Time: 30 Nov 2017, 09.14am
Message: This is absolutely insane, either we are being subjected to a massive campaign of disinformation or our government really have lost the plot. Does it appear that Theresa May is now overtly working for the eu? Does she perhaps have the Charlemagne prize in her sights like quislings Blair and Heath?
 ONE BUREAUCRAT,
ONE CITY, TWO SPEECHES,
ANOTHER PLANET
Monsieur Barnier, EU civil servant                                   © BDA
In two Berlin speeches, Barnier shows why
he's deluded and Mrs May is unfit
Yesterday in Berlin Michel Barnier gave two speeches. The first was to the Congress on European Security and Defence on security and defence, and the second was to the German Employers Convention on Brexit in general and the economic implications.
All Theresa May needs to know about the futility of her approach to Brexit negotiations was contained in these two speeches.
BARNIER SPEECH 1 – DEFENCE
Berlin, 29th November 2017
Brexit Facts4EU.Org Highlights from the Speech
Barnier starts by describing the backdrop to Brexit, highlighting terrorist threats and saying:
“Never had the need to be together, to protect ourselves together, to act together been so strong, so manifest. Yet rather than stay shoulder to shoulder with the Union, the British chose to be on their own again.”
His tone and words imply criticism of the UK in respect of the fight against terrorism and in defence generally. Quite extraordinary, coming from a Frenchman.
He then ran through a list of all the rapid changes in EU defence since June last year, which are leading to a common EU Defence Force - the 'EU Army'. Note that this was already all planned even before they knew the UK would vote to leave.
“And this Defence and Security Union will have to be developed without the British, since on 30 March 2019 the United Kingdom will, as is its wish, become a third country when it comes to defence and security issues.”
“We must draw the appropriate legal and operational conclusions from this:”
  • The UK defence minister will no longer take part in meetings of EU Defence Ministers; there will be no UK ambassador sitting on the Political and Security Committee.
  • The UK can no longer be a framework nation: it will not be able to take command of EU–led operations or lead EU battlegroups.
  • The UK will no longer be a member of the European Defence Agency or Europol.
  • The UK will not be able to benefit from the European Defence Fund the same way Member States will.
  • The UK will no longer be involved in decision-making, nor in planning our defence and security instruments.
“Theresa May has assured the Member States several times that the UK is committed unconditionally to maintaining European security.”
“The negotiations on the United Kingdom's withdrawal are a complex task that we carry out with reason and determination, without aggression or naivety: ‘there is no place for Schadenfreude in Brexit'. There is neither revenge nor punishment in our mission.”
He says this in almost every speech he makes and it's obvious he's lying. For the EU elites such as Barnier, Brexit is precisely all about punishment and revenge. It courses through their veins.
“Let's consider the title of your conference, ‘Security and defence in unpredictable times' – who can say for certain that Europe will still be a haven of stability in 10 or 20 years? It is for us, Europeans, to maintain this stability and to promote our values around the world. Nobody is going to do it for us.”
In fact it has been NATO that has been maintain stability in Europe and continues to do so. To say that "nobody is going to do it for us" proves that the EU plan to dispense with NATO as we have long predicted.
As stated above, Theresa May has already promised unconditional defence and security support for the EU, despite having received nothing in return. As usual, Barnier speaking for the EU has started to make demands in relation to this.
“Our future partnership must lead to some very concrete outcomes. For example, it must enable:”
  • the voluntary participation of the United Kingdom in missions and operations carried out by the European Union, in terms of both personnel and strategic assets;
  • the participation of the United Kingdom in joint armaments programmes and capability projects within the framework of the European Defence Agency, led by Jorge Domecq, together with industrial cooperation enabling these programmes to be implemented smoothly;
  • exchanges between our intelligence services to support our external action;
  • exchanges on cyber attacks and managing, preventing and responding collectively to such attacks.
“Our aim: autonomous and united European defence. Which means a Union capable of acting by itself and always supportive in its alliances.”
“The construction of a ‘Europe of Defence' has begun. ”
BARNIER SPEECH 2 – BREXIT GENERALLY AND THE ECONOMY
Berlin, 29th November 2017
Brexit Facts4EU.Org Highlights from the Speech
Barnier starts by belittling the importance of the UK market for German exporters:-
“Together, we have built up a very solid sense of unity with governments, the European Parliament, national parliaments and our social partners. Thanks to this, our negotiating positions have been clearly defined ever since the negotiations began.”
“Together, we have a robust and highly integrated economy. For Germany, 6% of trade in goods is with the United Kingdom, versus 56% with the other EU countries. Almost ten times more!”
He then reiterated the usual stuff about the EU needing three things sorted before they can discuss all the normal elements which need to be resolved.
“The first key is to put things in the right order, as the Member States and the European Parliament have asked us to do, beginning with restoring certainty in those areas where Brexit has given rise to uncertainty:”
  • We must guarantee the rights of European citizens in the United Kingdom and of British citizens in the European Union. And to protect them in the long term, we must ensure a uniform interpretation of the withdrawal agreement on both sides of the Channel. This means a role for the Court of Justice of the European Union, which has the jurisdiction to interpret concepts deriving from Union law. These concepts will remain the basis for protecting citizens' rights.
  • We must be fully accountable to taxpayers, a matter on which the European Commissioner for the Budget, Günther Oettinger, has been keeping a close eye.
  • We must find a way to maintain stability and cooperation in Ireland, so any restoration of a physical border must be avoided. The UK has made the choice to withdraw from the single market and the customs union. It should assume the consequences of this choice and take the responsibility to present viable and specific solutions for Ireland.
You may have spotted that Barnier found a new way to describe the demand for money for menaces. He called it being “fully accountable to taxpayers”. That's a new one on us, although it makes a nice change for anyone in the EU even to remember there are taxpayers to whom they should be accountable.
“Such an orderly withdrawal is a pre-condition for trust between the United Kingdom and the Union. And such trust is essential to negotiate our future relationship in the right conditions.”
“We are not there yet. We are continuing working this week on the three key topics in a constructive spirit to reach genuine sufficient progress.”
“It knows only too well that you cannot be half in and half out of the single market.”
  • You cannot want to end the free movement of persons, while maintaining the free movement of goods or services.
  • You cannot want to exit the single market and continue to set the rules for it.
  • You cannot withdraw from the customs union and hope to benefit from frictionless trade with the European Union.
“In its proposals on the future partnership, the United Kingdom suggests replicating the EU customs system at its own external borders so as to continue to benefit from the advantages of the customs union.”
“However, that would be tantamount to delegating the application and verification of our rules to a third country, whereas that country would not be subject to the same rules as us or to the same judicial controls.”
“The integrity of the internal market, our ‘Heimatmarkt', is not negotiable, quite simply because the internal market is one of the main assets we hold in common.”
The above merely demonstrates what a nightmare this organisation is. It doesn't care about what is logical or reasonable, it cares only for its rules whether they're sensible ones or not. This is something Theresa may simply doesn;t understand. They will never do a sensible deal with the UK. Never. Ever. Period.
ON BEING A NORMAL COMPETITIVE WORLD ECONOMY
“The UK, which is leaving the European Union, will need to tell us whether it will still adhere to the European model.”
“This is an important decision, because behind the European regulatory framework there are key societal choices we hold dear: our social market economy, health protection, food safety, fair and effective financial regulation.”
“There will be no ambitious partnership deal without common ground on fair competition, State aid, guarantees against tax dumping and social and environmental standards.”
The above basically says that if Theresa May is mad enough to try to negotiate a trade deal with them, they will insist that the UK makes itself as uncompetitive as the least competitive state in the EU. If the UK behaves like a normal independent country, sets competitive tax rates, encourages investment, stimulates its economy, etc, then there can be no trade deal.
THE UK GOVERNMENT LIES
“On 29 March 2019 at midnight, the United Kingdom will cease to be a Member State.”
“Whatever the outcome of the current negotiations, there will be no business as usual.”
Well that's told you.
“I don't know if the whole truth has been explained to British businesses on the concrete consequences of Brexit. My responsibility before you and everywhere in Europe is to tell the truth to European businesses.”
Hmmmm, we monitor the EU all the time. Truth is not something we usually associate with it, but let's see.
“In order to prepare for these automatic consequences of Brexit, the real transition period has already started. It is important for all businesses to analyse with clarity their exposure to the UK and to be ready if need be to adapt their logistical channels, supply chains and contractual clauses.”
“And it is equally important for each undertaking to prepare for a ‘no deal' scenario, implying a return to customs tariffs under WTO rules, not to mention increased border control procedures.”
“In particular, this would result in a sharp increase in transport and storage costs, with a very negative impact on undertakings operating on a just-in-time basis.”
“For that reason, the ‘no deal' scenario is not our scenario. But since it cannot be ruled out, we have to prepare for it.”
Finally Barnier mentioned three areas where the EU is looking to improve, one of which is the following:-
“By continuing to build our ‘Global Europe', which is preparing to offer our undertakings new opportunities to export to Australia and New Zealand.”
The EU never seems to stop talking about Australia and New Zealand. Strange, because neither of those countries were treated so warmly prior to the Brexit vote. It's almost as though the EU would love to strike a quick trade deal with one of our oldest cousins, just to spite us.....
OBSERVATIONS
Michel Blarney went to speak to the Berlin Security Conference and he told them what unreliable defence partners the British are.
Then he went to speak to German employers and he told them how unimportant the British market is for their goods.
This was a blitzkrieg of blackmail bluster. It was almost all complete and utter nonsense. He knows this, as does the rest of the Commission and the EU Council, but they are still playing their game.
The problem for the UK is that their game is working. The UK government has been nothing short of abysmal at rebutting the anti-British propaganda of the EU. And it has been even worse at handling the negotiations.
WE DEAL WITH THE EU’S PROPAGANDA ON A DAILY BASIS. WE’RE DROWNING IN IT. AND THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT IS DOING NOTHING ABOUT IT.
If the government doesn’t have people capable of mounting a counter-propaganda campaign against the EU, we can manage it for them if they pay for the resources.
We don’t particularly want to, but something has to be done by someone. It simply doesn’t seem to be understood in Whitehall what cost this is having for the interests of the United Kingdom. The anti-British drip-drip feed from the EU Commission, the EU Parliament, and the EU Council is constant. The EU27 and world media is just soaking up this garbage.
For heaven’s sake do something Prime Minister.
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 Commission | Berlin Security Conference | German Employers Convention ]            06.25am, 30 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: : A Hawes, Great Britain      Date/Time: 30 Nov 2017, 8.07pm
Message: So after 40 years there is no trust between us! maybe we should give it another 40 years to see if we can start to trust each other! however it is true that we should not trust these people at all. Is this article 50 process not long enough for a transition period? 3 years should be easy for people to get their heads around us leaving. they will never never give us a good uk exit deal.they are dragging us around like rag dolls and most certainly wish to try to punish us. maybe after therisa may gives billions of pounds (hope not)and later sees that it bought us nothing,the government will start to conquer their fears and start to work hard in all matters,ONLY for the benefit of Britain. mrs may is woefully in deep water with the hyenas circling! if she thinks they will treat her kindly as after all we are the british,she is sorely mistaken. the government must start thinking for themselves and for Britain!
Name: Patrick H, Greater London      Date/Time: 30 Nov 2017, 2.47pm
Message: Michel Barnier statement: "The UK will no longer be involved in decision-making, nor in planning our defence and security instruments." ..... Good, then let the UK concentrate on its own defence-force and the continued support of NATO. The EU appears to be embarking on a very dangerous course, which is expensive, duplicates effort and could possibly draw our young men and women into dangerous overseas issues; all of which are of no direct concern to the UK. Let the EU continue with its Geopolitical megalomania, we are better off out of this madness!
Name: W. Alkaway Essex UK      Date/Time: 30 Nov 2017, 11.19am
Message: Prime Minister Mrs May is seen by the EU as an easy touch. Also up for criticism is the EU Brexit Negotiator, Mr Barnier. By his latest hate speech here is someone who is clearly incapable of concluding a fair deal with the UK. He is Mr TAKE IT ALL and GIVE NOTHING. The EU has absolutely no intention of coming up with a fair deal on Brexit. That is clear. As the British people voted to Leave, no amount of hectoring and unreasonable and nasty demands, by Mr Barnier and his fellow EU dictators, will convince Britain that we want to have any further dealings with them. They are the ones who will really suffer when we turn away. The moment should be soon. Why would the British Government stand by and watch the EU savage us? The stakes are too high. Forget the people at their peril for we'll vote out the current Tory Government at the next General Election. The Nation is watching ... and waiting.
Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 30 Nov 2017, 09.13am
Message: Having read the full script of Barnier's speech you get the full impression of contempt and bile he holds for the UK. How dare the UK Government think for themselves, abide by a democratic vote. He implies that the British are cowards, rejecting his wonderful united Europe and running away from the Islamic terrorist threats. Not once does he acknowledge the work done by our security services, GCHQ, which is far superior than anything the EU can offer. That GCHQ, through the British Government, alert other countries to impending terror threats. The fact that the French and Belgian security services don't always share information with each other, let alone the rest of the EU members. Nowhere in this speech does he mention that importing one and a half million undocumented Middle Eastern migrants by Angela Merkel might have something to do with the security situation. He implies that the UK are so minor, when we have left the other 27 countries won't notice, except for our cash contribution of course. Reading the contempt with which the UK are held in by the EU chief negotiator, I am relieved we are leaving. I cannot understand why the British Government want to "seek a special and close relationship" with the EU. The EU is clearly only interested in the UK for our market to sell goods to, and the monetary contribution we make to the EU budget. March 2019 cannot come quick enough to be rid of the tentacles of this increasing undemocratic and totalitarian cartel.
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 LA FRANCE EMMERDÉE?
MACRON’S ‘EN MARCHE’ MAKES FRANCE
ADOPT THE SYMBOLS OF THE EU
Macron “is firmly committed to a united, sovereign and democratic European Union”
EU flag, anthem, motto, 'Europe' Day...
Monday night was a sad night for anyone who has ever been stirred by the scene in the film Casablanca where Paul Henreid, playing a Resistance leader in Vichy French Morocco, inspires the orchestra in Rick’s Bar to play La Marseillaise to drown out a group of German officers singing ‘Die Wacht am Rhein’.
Somehow, we just can’t see that the playing of German composer Ludwig van Beethoven’s ‘Ode an die Freude’ would have had the same effect.
The famous 'La Marseillaise' scene from the film 'Casablanca'
Below we satisfy your craving with a video, but first we would like to put it into a modern context.
WHITHER MARIANNE, SYMBOL OF LA RÉPUBLIQUE?
In the Assemblée Nationale in Paris on Monday evening, MPs voted to incorporate and recognise the EU’s anthem ‘Ode to Joy’ and the EU’s flag of 12 yellow stars.
16 of the 28 Member States of the EU have already signed Declaration No 52 annexed to the Treaties on the symbols of the European Union. France will now be the 17th, thanks to President Emmanuel Macron and his ‘La République En March’ party.
Right: Marianne, symbol of the French Republic
 
WHAT THEY VOTED ON
© Assemblée Nationale
Here are the opening statements from the preamble to the parliamentary motion:-
(Trans.: Facts4EU.Org) :-
“Mesdames, Messieurs,
“Since the Treaty of Paris in 1951, the construction of Europe, with the creation of the European Economic Community in 1957 which became the European Union in 1993, has furthered the period of peace that Western Europe has known since the end of the second World War. It has made possible the creation of an area of freedom, security and justice unique in the world for the 28 countries of the European Union.
“Nevertheless, it is clear that the European Union is often considered too distant or ineffective by its own citizens. Even if its contributions to the life of Europeans are recognized, it has become for some a distant shadow. We must respond to this feeling. In order to continue the European project and to develop it, the adherence of Europeans is essential. Today we need to restore the taste of Europe.
“The authors of this motion for a resolution intend to take this ambition and make a strong gesture for the rapprochement of Europe and its citizens.
“They share the commitment of the President of the Republic who is firmly committed to a united, sovereign and democratic European Union.”
WHAT IT MEANS
The motion was passed and it effects the following ‘symbols’ which France now officially recognises and promotes:-
Brexit Facts4EU.Org Summary:-
  • The flag, representing a circle of twelve gold stars on a blue background
  • The anthem taken from the "Ode to Joy" of Beethoven's Ninth Symphony
  • The motto "United in Diversity"
  • Europe Day on May 9
  • The euro as a currency
The last is of course a formality, as France was in the first group of countries to adopt the Euro as its currency.
However the first five items all draw the French closer into what is rapidly becoming the United States of Europe. Given that the French President “is firmly committed to a united, sovereign and democratic European Union”, this is perhaps not surprising.
OBSERVATIONS
This motion may have been about national symbols, but in a way that makes it all the more chilling.
If the French are known for one thing above all others, it is for national pride. Indeed many might say that this fierté goes much too far, and even extends into prejudice against all foreigners.
This of course is hotly contested by the French who maintain that they are neither racist nor xenophobic. They can’t help it (they protest) if France, the French, French goods and services, French ideas, culture and language, and the French way of doing things are all better than for any other country.
Anyone who has ever tried to do business in France might disagree profoundly. Many would say that the French are one of the most protectionist countries in the world and that they put an almost insurmountable number of obstacles in front of companies wishing to do business there.
We are firmly in the latter camp, based on experience of several members of the team.
One thing is certain, the United Kingdom’s gallic neighbours have a reputation for standing up for themselves.
'YOUNG BLUE EYES'
In President Macron, however, the French have inadvertently elected a man who would happily sacrifice all symbols of French identity in pursuit of his globalist vision and ambitions.
He and his supporters would naturally say the opposite is true. They might point at his attempts to protect French workers by pushing for Eurozone rules to be tightened and for ‘social dumping’ of cheap Eastern European labour into France to be curtailed.
In fact, we see Macron’s moves as being designed purely to cement his power in France. He has rapidly become one of the most unpopular Presidents in the shortest time and he knows he has to placate both his supporters and the voters of France.
One way of doing this is to look tough on issues like cheap foreign labour, and migrants. In doing this he is shoring up the vote which might otherwise start running in the direction of Marine Le Pen or Jean-Luc Mélenchon.
Right: Marine Le Pen
 
MACRON’S GLOBALISM
In Gothenburg for the EU’s ‘Social Pillar’ Summit two weeks ago he said: “Structural funds are being used to maintain low costs and engage in tax competition, we have to rediscover some consistency.”
“We need to define a set of common standards. It’s not about imposing a one size fits all, but to set minimum standards based on the reality of each country.”
When a politician like Macron says it’s not about imposing something, you know that’s exactly what it’s about.
We listened to Macron’s speeches in his campaign for President and this man is a product of ‘École Globale’. The worry is that he’s young enough to be around to see his globalist, everyone-the-same-and-part-of-the-same-country vision realised.
WHAT OF ANGELA MERKEL?
Ironically Frau Merkel, Kanzlerin of Germany, was unable to attend the EU’s ‘Social Summit’ in Sweden, due to the little local difficulties she has suffered since the German elections when her popular support was decimated at the ballot box.
Had she been there, she would undoubtedly have backed Macron in his determination to stop Eastern European countries (for which read mainly Poland) from undercutting western European companies in their labour costs.
She would have been less keen on Macron’s plans for subsidies by ‘the EU’ (for which read Germany) of the Euro zone, to make it a true financial and economic union. That is a price for EU unity which German voters are currently not in the mood to let Frau Merkel pay.
In the piece below, our Editor offers a personal note on the actions of the French parliament on Monday evening.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: Assemblée Nationale | EU Commission ]            07.30am, 29 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Denis Cooper, Berks      Date/Time: 29 Nov 2017, 12.23am
Message: Just a reminder that this was in the EU Constitution, Article I-8, which was rejected by the French and Dutch referendums; it was one of the few parts which were omitted when Merkel had the legal contents decanted into her Reform Treaty, later the Lisbon Treaty, presumably because she felt it was just too provocative for some member states, especially the UK, but then a group of sixteen member states decided to put it back in but as a non-binding declaration, Declaration 52 attached to the treaty.
 “WE’LL ALWAYS HAVE PARIS”
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR
As a boy I was faced with the most awful dilemma.
Watching the classic war-time love story Casablanca, was I Victor Laszlo, the brave Resistance leader secretly married to Ilse, or Rick, the ultracool American bar owner, former lover of Ilse, and all-round renegade?
Fortunately of one thing I was in no doubt.
Ingrid Bergman (playing Ilse, the love interest of both men) was the most beautiful woman ever to grace the planet earth.
Right: Ingrid Bergman, playing 'Ilse'
 
On Monday evening, decades after first watching Casablanca, I found myself having to watch the proceedings of L'Assemblée Nationale - a far less enjoyable experience. I wondered for a moment what the characters in the film would have made of things in modern-day, political-elite Paris.
Here I must tread on eggshells, and I certainly don't want to offend any of our German readers. I hope by now they know that whilst we hate the EU, we love Europe and that includes the land of Luther, Böll, Brecht, Goethe, Grass, Hauptmann, Hesse, Von Heyse, Kleist, Mann, Schiller, Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Bruckner, Händel, Haydn, Mahler, Schubert, Schumann, Stockhausen, the two Strausses, Wagner...
That said, the anthem which President Macron wants his people to embrace has a chequered history, to say the least.
Here is the unfortunate history of the political use of EU’s adopted anthem:
   
Hitler birthday concert                            Ode To Joy's composer: Beethoven
  • A Third Reich favourite : played on Hitler’s birthdays and on Nazi radio
  • Played at the opening ceremony of the Berlin Olympics in 1936
  • Even used to be played at the Nazis’ Terezin concentration camp
  • Used as the German anthem at 2 Olympics in 1950s and 1960s
  • It was the anthem of white supremacist and apartheid Rhodesia until 1980
  • Finally adopted as EU’s anthem in 1985, without any public vote (of course)
I hope that one day the French people will wake up to what is being done to them. Outside of Paris and some other large cities, France is still a magnificent country in so many ways.
It’s possible the fightback has been underway for some time. After all, despite the propaganda you get from the BBC and the EU, the Front National doubled their vote and came second in the French presidential elections this year. They didn’t win but the trend is their friend, as we say in the Anglo-Saxon world.
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
Whilst the Front National are not necessarily the answer to all France’s problems, their vote share is perhaps indicative of the revolt that is starting.
France’s problems run far wider and deeper than is ever reported in the British media – or come to that in the French media. France is still a country run by a government of bureaucratic elites who all went to the same university. The economic malaise has been almost completely hidden by France’s membership of the EU and it’s very smart use of that institution to gain advantage in every corner of economic life. However, whilst the economic problems may have been well disguised, sooner or later these things have a tendency of catching up with people.
 
The realities of the contemporary world economies must be recognised by the French if they don't want to plummet down the economic tables. Unfortunately Macron already has them well on the way to absorbing themselves into a grand EU morass, which means no-one will really know how bad things got, but neither will they care. I want them to care.
Left: French actress Madeleine Lebeau belting out La Marseillaise in 'Casablanca'
I just hope that the contrary, opinionated, obstinate, pain-in-the-arse and deep-down patriotic people I know and love will eventually push back the tide of ghastly Macronism. It may be tough for a decade or so, whilst they rebalance their economy, but at least they would still have their French identity.
Then maybe one day I’ll once again be able to say: “We’ll always have Paris.”
Oh yes, I nearly forgot. The team thought we could hardly let you go without reminding you of one of the best scenes in cinematic history, and a salutary reminder of what it can be like to love your country. Roll the tape...
We've had to take out the embedded video as it wasn't working for everyone. Here's a link to it on youtube instead. Enjoy!
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: Assemblée Nationale | EU Commission ]            07.30am, 29 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Michael Z Freeman      Date/Time: 29 Nov 2017, 11.34am
Message: I remember some particularly patriotic French characters in the TV series Sharpe. Globalists have brain washed so many young people into seeing themselves as "global citizens" at the expense of the nation state. I know, I used to be one of them, even exclaiming dutifully when asked "I am a global citizen". Nationalism is assumed to be "the cause of all wars" as if war, violence and misplaced ambition would disappear over night if we lived in one homogeneous mass. The origin of all this nonsense goes back to forms of socialism that started being implemented post WW2 ... "world citizenship", a term coined by the first Director-General of the World Health Organization - link ... "If individuals could come to their senses and learn to think and act globally, they would form a single human race, embodying his concept of ‘world citizenship’". Charlotte Thomson Iserbyt also documents the same homogenization in the United States education system - link. So many people today, often young people who have not had time enough here to see through the lies, have been force fed this agenda unaware of the long history of its promotion.
Name: Sally, Herts      Date/Time: 29 Nov 2017, 08.50am
Message: I just want to say I'm so glad I found you. I don't know any other site which is tough as we should be (but which the government isn't) on the Brexit negotiations and yet still able to produce great and interssting articles like the two above. Really good writing, thank you.
 WILL THE PATHETIC BLEATING
FROM THE IVORY TOWERS
PLEASE NOW CEASE?
Another thumbs up by international students for Brexit Britain
It seems that university professors may finally have to shut up about the cataclysmic effect of Brexit on their universities’ finances.
Official figures were released yesterday by UCAS, the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service. They show that international students arrived in even bigger numbers this year.
Brexit Facts4EU.Org Summary:-
  • Overall number of acceptances in 2017 : 533,890 students (all nationalities)
  • Second highest number of acceptances on record
  • Acceptance rate increased by 1.8% to 76.3%, the highest since 2008
  • Non-EU students increased by 1,900, or +5.0%
  • EU27 students totalled 30,700 – the second-highest since records began
A rather disingenuous summary was produced by UCAS yesterday, suggesting UK student numbers were up.
© UCAS
In fact numbers of new UK students were slightly down, by 2,535 or 0.5%. However the education business (for that is what it now is) does not want Government seeing a headline showing that numbers are down, as this might encourage the thought that budgets can be cut.
Nevertheless, overall intake numbers were healthy, in part thanks to the 5% hike in international (non-EU27) student numbers, which offset the fall in UK student numbers.
Fig 1: Total students accepted in 2017 intake is 2nd highest on record
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
EU27 STUDENTS IN PROPORTION
Despite the negative press put out by the universities about Brexit – enough to put off the hardiest 18 year-old from Frankfurt or Firenze wanting an excellent British university education – numbers entering were only marginally down, by just 650 students or 2.1%.
To put this into context for you, in 2012 there was a 13% drop in EU27 students - over six times larger than this year’s small fall. Clearly Brexit has had no noticeable effect, despite all the pre-Referendum propaganda.
Fig 2: Non-EU student intake in 2017 is 2nd highest on record, up 5.0% on last year
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
EU 27 students are the smallest proportion of the figures reported by UCAS:-
  • UK students : 86.7%
  • International (non-EU) students: 7.5%
  • EU27 students : 5.8%
SOUND-BITE TO REMEMBER: EU27 students are less than 6% of total
Boring statistical note for any academic Remainers reading this: The above is a summary. We produce summaries because people read them. They're not generally interested in your long-winded and detailed critiques and self-justifications. Normal people have busy lives. If you want to read the full report from UCAS, it is here.
OBSERVATIONS
The universities and their molly-coddled senior staff were particularly vocal during last year’s Referendum campaign. You may recall the letter to the Times from 103 Vice-Chancellors, on the Monday before the vote. You may also recall absurd predictions of dramatic reductions of student numbers.
As usual with Remainer threats, none of this has come to pass. It seems that the highly-educated who knew better than ordinary mortals have turned out to look rather stupid.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: Universities and Colleges Admissions Service Report 2017 ]            06.40am, 28 November 2017
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Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 28 Nov 2017, 1.03pm
Message: Interesting article and another insight into the anti-Brexit narrative. Remainers constantly suggest they are (a) better educated, (b) younger and therefore more enlightened and (c) much better informed about the EU and its superlative benefits. Simply put, their argument is Brexiteers are typically uneducated, old and staid and ill-informed? I decided to challenge Remainers on this argument. I went to 7 publications: Guardian, Telegraph, Independent, The Spectator, Economist, Breitbart and Guido Fawkes and asked a simple question on their blogs: My argument for leaving the EU - 1. Annual deficit £96 Billion 2. Annual £9 Billion net for club membership 3. The EU is extremely profligate 4. The EU is not Democratic 5. Not aware of any tangible EU benefits. I pointed out that I have an open mind on the subject and welcomed their opinion? I simply asked them to list down all the tangible benefits for remaining in the EU. Results: During the course of three months, I received 16 obnoxious comments that I was ignorant and stupid, with a few suggesting I was only presenting a misinformed Strawman argument? One had the courtesy to point out I was misinformed on the figures and should do more research, but did not offer up any argument towards any EU benefits...other than that nothing! Not one person listed the benefits or offered up any alternative erudite argument? My conclusion: I believe in general, Remainers have limited knowledge, or better, have no clue at all about the EU, its finer workings or how citizens in the UK derive benefits from this opaque organisation. When questioned, they can only resort to puerile nasty comments. This is because they have no logical, intelligent or erudite argument! I am amazed at their lack of knowledge!....well, actually, not really!
 “THIS NEEDS TO BE
AN ECONOMIC BREXIT,
NOT A POLITICAL ONE”
PURE BREXIT KNOWLEDGE & ARGUMENT DEFEATS PRO-EU BBC
Rt Hon Peter Lilley
10 minutes of great, Brexit television, with a super-charged Rt Hon Peter Lilley taking on the Irish government and the BBC
If you sometimes find yourself losing the will to live when yet another discussion of the Northern Ireland border comes up, we sympathise. This issue can seem unfathomable to anyone outside the island of Ireland.
On Friday, the veteran, distinguished Brexiteer and former Cabinet minister, the Rt Hon Peter Lilley appeared on one of the BBC’s Northern Ireland programmes, to be quizzed on Brexit and the border.
Below is the video of this fascinating encounter. It starts with the Irish Foreign Minister in the Irish parliament, just to get you in the mood.
Here's an example of Mr Lilley on 'take no prisoners' form, speaking about the Irish government:-
“We’ve put forward those proposals and we haven’t had any concrete response from them.”
“All they’ve done is leak third-rate tittle-tattle, from second-ranking diplomats, from a government which itself is weak, wobbling, and may fall shortly.”
Rt Hon Peter Lilley, 24 Nov 2017
Mr Lilley starts his attack about two minutes in and he's worth waiting for!
Approx 10 mins - © YouTube / BBC
OBSERVATIONS
We have said before that the question of the post-Brexit border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland is a political device being used very cynically by the EU in its punishment process against the people and government of the United Kingdom.
WHERE THE IRISH BORDER QUESTION CAME FROM
Back in July 2016, the EU elites met in emergency session following the earthquake that was the decision of the British people to leave the EU's failing club.
One of the issues was finding a way to disguise what was to become the biggest attempted money-grab in world history. In order to disguise this blackmail demand for a hundred billion euros (together with numerous other absurd demands), the EU hit on the idea of having two other items which they could add to the demand for money with menaces.
In addition to the money, therefore, they chose citizens’ rights and Northern Ireland. Each of these ‘issues’, they felt, would make the EU elites look like caring people instead of money-grabbing political shysters.
And so they had their ‘three fundamental issues’ which they then said needed to be decided before the EU would even think about all the basic, normal issues which have to be decided. The three issues are called “citizens’ rights, the Northern Ireland border, and the single financial setllement”. They are called that, but in reality the three issues for the EU are money, money, and money.
SO, IS THE BORDER UNIMPORTANT?
No, of course it’s important. However it’s also important to put it in context. There are dozens of major issues which need to be discussed and agreed before the UK leaves the EU, before even thinking about the many thousands of smaller issues.
How the border between Northern Ireland and the Republic is resolved is important. It’s just not so very important as to obliterate almost all other issues. In our opinion it is one of many key issues which might be considered as priorities, but it should be considered along with several other important issues. In particular the future trade arrangements with the EU will have to be known in broad terms at the very least, before decisions on the border can be made.
SECONDLY, HOW ARE THE IRISH AND THE EU HELPING?
We listen to, read, and watch the EU in as many of its tentacles as we can everyday. It’s an appalling job, but someone has to do it because the pro-EU BBC certainly isn’t doing its job properly. In all of the items we have listened to, watched or read, we haven’t once come across any suggestions as to how the EU would really like to deal with the border issue.
All one hears are vague and aggressive comments. Peter Lilley in fact points this out several times during the interview, when the biased interviewer keeps trying to provoke him by claiming that the British government doesn’t have any solutions. In fact, as Mr Lilley points out, the British government HAS offered solutions in broad terms. It just isn’t good enough for the other side (including the BBC) to say that “you don’t understand, it’s a complex problem”.
As Mr Lilley points out to the rather excited BBC man, the UK has offered simple solutions and nothing is preventing the Irish government from coming back with a complex answer if that is what is required.
THIRDLY, WHOSE PROBLEM IS IT?
Put simply, it's the EU's and the Republic of Ireland's problem. It's the EU that will insist on putting up a hard border if there's no Brexit deal, not the UK. What is even more astonishing is that the Irish government and the EU are saying that in those circumstances the UK will have to pay for it!!!
The UK’s proposed solutions are simple and here at Facts4EU.Org we simply don’t understand why they can’t form the basis for an agreement.... Unless in fact that’s not what the EU wants.
This brings us on to a key part of the answer to this question. Is the Irish government actually interested in sorting out a sensible deal with the UK government, which works to the benefit of the Irish people, and then selling that to Brussels? Or it it trying to play with the big boys in Brussels in order to curry favour with them?
Don’t forget, the EU is on the road to having one standard corporate tax rate. Ireland has got itself out of near bankrupcy partly as a result of having one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the EU. It did this to attract major corporates to have their headquarters in Ireland and it has worked.
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
This, however, has not gone down well with Brussels. Moves have been afoot for the last couple of years to have a standard rate and this is inevitable for Euro currency economies like Ireland.
In fact, one of the many criticisms being levelled at the UK is that after Brexit the UK will become a low-tax economy. It’s quite difficult for the EU to start demanding all kinds of conditions to be attached to any future trade deal, to prevent the UK from having attractive economic conditions for international and domestic companies, when Ireland’s rate is almost half the EU average and a third of the rate of the top country Malta.
FOURTHLY, ARE THEY TRYING FOR IRISH UNIFICATION?
It was only last week that the Irish Foreign Minister was stating openly that he wanted to see the unification of the island of Ireland in his working lifetime. He even said this whilst being questioned about Brexit.
He and other senior members of the Irish government including the Taoiseach Leo Varadkar have been pushing for Northern Ireland to remain in the Customs Union, which would then mean it having a border in the North Sea between Northern Ireland and its biggest market, the rest of the UK.
It seems obvious that the Irish government are plotting to use Brexit to help to bring about a unification of the Republic with Northern Ireland. This is of course wholly unacceptable and is also potentially deeply unhelpful to the peaceful coexistence of the peoples on that island.
It is our view that the senior members of the Irish government need to take a very long, hard look at themselves before they make any more accusations that Brexit is putting the Good Friday peace accord at risk.
THE ADMIRABLE PETER LILLEY
Peter Lilley made excellent points in the video and we hope you enjoyed it. We think he shed important light onto what is a difficult subject for people in the rest of the Kingdom to understand.
During the Referendum campaign last year he made some wonderful speeches. Needless to say these got far less coverage than they should have done. We think Mr Lilley is a great loss to Parliament, and that the House is poorer since he decided to stand down before the last General Election.
We very much hope he will carry on speaking out with his usual directness and acerbic wit, on behalf of a clean Brexit.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: BBC Northern Ireland | Peter Lilley | EU Commission ]
     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual.

       06.40am, 27 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 28 Nov 2017, 1.41pm
Message: Sensible dialogue, negated by a manipulating EU controlled narrative to undermine the UK/EU Brexit negotiations? UK position: These are our workable proposals for cross-border controls between the UK and Eire? Eire Response: This is simply chaotic and unworkable? UK: Which part do you have an issue with, and can you suggest an alternative solution? Eire response: This simply chaotic and unworkable and it is up to the UK to come forward with recommendations? UK: we have provided recommendations and solutions in our formal proposal. Please kindly respond to them? Eire response: This simply chaotic and unworkable and it is up to the UK to come forward with recommendations? This is a complete and utter "absurd" farse! WTO for God's sake!
 LEAKED PAPERS:
NEW EU RULES TO BE FORCED
ON UK DURING TRANSITION
UK will be subject to all new EU laws if it enters ‘Transition Period’ on 29th March 2019
             © The Independent 2017
The Independent has been given leaked documents from the EU, showing that the UK will be subject to all new EU laws if it enters a transition period on 29th March 2019.
The new leaked presentation prepared by Monsieur Barnier and his team shows that Mrs May’s much-lauded ‘Transition Period’ must involve “the automatic application in the UK of new EU rules post-30 March 2019”.
In other words, the UK will be:
  • Under the rule of the ECJ
AND
  • Under any new EU rules after March 2019 and with no say in approving them
According to the Independent, EU Chief Negotiator Barnier is clear that Britain would have “no institutional rights, no presence in the institutions” and “no voting rights”.
This automatically means that the UK would have to follow rules made in the interests of the remaining member states and would even have to incorporate them into British law, but with no control of how they are formed.
OBSERVATIONS
We are not the slightest bit surprised by this as it is precisely how we have always characterised the EU’s approach to the idea of a ‘Transition’ or ‘Implementation’ Period.
The EU were always going to impose their existing rules for the Transition Period and we knew that effectively this would mean remaining in the EU in all but name, although this has been strenuously denied by the government. However in this leaked document the EU has more explicitly detailed what we knew all along.
The concept of a Transition Period was pushed hard at various times during this year by Theresa May’s Chancellor Philip Hammond and by her Home Secretary Amber Rudd. Both these two key Cabinet ministers were prominent Remainers and neither of them has shown the slightest signs of supporting Brexit, as some other ministers now have.
In their eyes, the Transition Period was in fact the perfect Limbo-Land. If they couldn’t overturn the result of the Referendum at least they could place the UK in a status that was still effectively in the EU, whilst pretending that Brexit had been delivered.
In the article below we look at the Transition Period from a different perspective.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: The Independent | EU Commission ]
     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual.

       06.55am, 27 November 2017
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Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 27 Nov 2017, 10.23am
Message: The UK politicians seem scared of leaving their safety blanket, the EU. I suppose after 43 years of having some other, unelected body run your country, the prospect of doing it all yourself might be daunting. The ruling class seem bewildered, they seem to want a deal at all costs, why? The EU appears on the front foot issuing threats and demands, the UK must carry on paying, lose your rebate, abide by all rulings during transition, submit to ECJ. No other country in the world since the 19th century, has allowed a foreign judiciary to rule over their courts. Why are we even contemplating such a move! Over the weekend the Director General of the WTO, Roberto Azevedo, said leaving the EU without a deal wouldn't be a problem, wouldn't be the end of the world, let's hope our political masters have taken note.
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 27 Nov 2017, 08.43am
Message: I had a gut feeling many moons ago the EU commission may attempt in some devious manner to frustrate Brexit. My wish is that people across continental Europe can now, and continue to see with their wide open, how vindictive the EU commission is behaving towards the UK. It is time we TOLD the EU thanks, but no thanks, we will NOT be threatened. TIME TO WALK AWAY FROM DISCUSSIONS AND WITHHOLD ALL FURTHER CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE EU? They could huff and puff, and stamp their feet in protest as much as they want, but enough is enough. Only then will they understand we really are leaving. Whilst mutual business is the favourable outcome for the benefit of the UK and the EU, I do not wish to do business with those whom threaten us. There's a big world out there waiting to do business with the UK. We must NOT allow the EU to get in the way of it. High time the EU had another 'wake-up' call, and all Brexiteers should remind our government they're presently skating on VERY 'thin-ice'.
 EU STILL PRETENDS
TRANSITION PERIOD
IS A NEW IDEA
BUT THE INDEPENDENT’S ‘EXCLUSIVE’ WASN’T REALLY NEWS AT ALL
             © EU Commission 2017
The EU now seems to be talking as if Mrs May’s Transition Period is something new. It isn’t.
Various forms of a transition deal were mooted over recent years, even amongst hardline Brexiteers before they knew they could get a full referendum on EU membership. A Transition Deal then became part of government policy last year and was openly announced at the start of the year.
The Prime Minister was clear about the nature of this - and the requirement for it in her opinion - when she made her key ‘Lancaster House’ speech back in mid-January.
THERESA MAY ON THE TRANSITION PERIOD,
LANCASTER HOUSE SPEECH, 17 JAN 2017:-
Approx 2 mins - © YouTube / HMG
Transcript of key sentences:-
I do not mean that we will seek some form of unlimited transitional status… instead, I want us to have reached an agreement about our future partnership by the time the 2-year Article 50 process has concluded.
From that point onwards, we believe a phased process of implementation, in which both Britain and the EU institutions and member states prepare for the new arrangements that will exist between us will be in our mutual self-interest.
- Theresa May's 'Lancaster House' Speech, 17 Jan 2017
BARNIER AND THE EU HAVE ALWAYS KNOWN ABOUT THE TRANSITION PERIOD
Michel Barnier keeps talking as if the Transition Period is a new idea. In fact he and others in the EU have discussed the EU’s approach to any Transition Period many times.
We would just like to remind you of what he said about it back in September:
A word now on the new, key element raised in Theresa May's speech: The United Kingdom requested for the first time a transition period for a limited amount of time beyond its withdrawal from the European Union and its institutions.
This is currently not part of my mandate, but I would like to insist on a few conditions that the European Council has already set out. Allow me to refer you to the European Council guidelines, which must be read regularly – as I often do.
  1. The Union also must decide if such a period is in its interest.
  2. Any transition must respect the legal and financial framework of the Single Market. To quote the European Council: "Should a time-limited prolongation of Union acquis be considered, this would require existing Union regulatory, budgetary, supervisory, judiciary and enforcement instruments and structures to apply." Those are the words of the European Council. I think that everybody should remember them.
  3. Finally, discussions on a transition – which will now take place since the UK has requested it –do not absolve us from the necessity of making "sufficient progress." Progress on our three key issues remains more than ever necessary in order to build the trust needed to begin discussing our future relationship.
A final point, which is also important, is that we do not mix up the discussion on liabilities and commitments from the past – which are the subjects that make up the orderly withdrawal – with a discussion on the future relationship.”
- Michel Barnier press conference following the General Affairs Council (Article 50), 25 September 2017
And here he is a month later in an interview with 5 European papers on Tues 24th October:
During this period, the EU legal framework including on jurisdiction would continue to apply to Britain.
We don’t have time to invent a new model. So for a short time after the formal exit from the EU the economic status quo would continue to apply, which besides the internal market also includes the customs union and collective political decisions.
The only difference is that the British would no longer take part in decisions on European legislation.
OBSERVATIONS
So the concept of a Transition Period is not new and the UK government has made it clear for the whole of this year that they want to discuss this.
Neither is it news that the EU wants to use the Transition Period to blackmail the UK for even more concessions and that they will insist that nothing changes for the UK during the Transition Period. To be very clear, we will list the problems.
If there is a Transition Period the EU will not allow:-
  • End to jurisdiction of European Court of Justice
  • End to vast contributions to the EU every year
  • UK's control of its own borders, end to free movement
  • End to the rules of the Single Market
  • Being able to trade freely internationally and do new free trade deals
  • An end to the Common Commercial Policy and the Common External Tariff
In short there will be virtually no difference from being a full member of the EU.
Brexit Facts4EU.Org
The problem with the narrative about the Brexit negotiations is that both the politicians and the media present information in a very fuddled way to the public.
The former do it to obscure the absurd nature of their demands or concessions. The latter do it to produce more copy and to sell more newspapers, online subscriptions and advertising.
When it comes to the Transition Period, it was mooted officially by Theresa May in her main speech in January, yet the EU constantly pretend it’s something new. Remember what Barney said in September’s round of negotiations: “The United Kingdom requested for the first time a transition period for a limited amount of time beyond its withdrawal from the European Union and its institutions.” Tosh. He’d known about it all year.
We do not like the idea of a Transition Period and have consistently argued against it. There are many reasons but here are a few:
  • It doesn’t matter how long you give the EU over something, they’ll always want to take longer
  • Remoaners simply want to extend the process of Brexit to have more time to overturn it
  • The EU will always apply their rules, thereby stopping new trade deals for the UK
  • The EU will always insist on continuing free movement, single market and customs union rules
  • It was unnecessary – two years and nine months was perfectly long enough to plan Brexit
  • Transition will mean that Brexit will be extended - the UK will effectively still be in the EU
Nevertheless, stories keep coming up about the same old things. Sometimes we respond, but often when it’s something we’ve already covered more than once, we don’t.
As so much is currently being said about the Transition Period we thought we’d clarify things again. It is also worth repeating that we are particularly and vehemently opposed to ECJ rules applying to the UK after the supposed exit date of 29th March 2019. Likewise, the UK must be allowed to sign and start new trade deals and there should be no continued annual payments or even lump sum. There must be no ‘business as usual’. Out is out.
As the Prime Minister herself once put it “Brexit means Brexit”.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: HM Government | Handelsblatt | EU Commission ]
     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual.

       06.55am, 27 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 27 Nov 2017, 09.47am
Message: In my long considered opinion, Mr Michel Barnier is playing the 'long game', though we should I believe now consider that as he acts on behalf of the EU27, they have given their implied permission for him to act in this manner? At the end of the day, this is all about money, and the EU want what we have, and lots of it (hence delay after delay). The UK is strong enough to stand up to the EU and tell them where to go in blunt terms should they continue in this way, perhaps our leaders are not? I would suggest one reason we see discontent across continental Europe is people look back decades to see this started as a trading arrangement between several like minded countries, long before the UK was involved. Indeed, we never really adapted to foreign ways, but the British people were deceived at the outset - AND THAT'S A FACT. We must also question WHY we allow unelected foreign bureaucrats to walk all over our elected leaders? This is purely political and only happens because our leaders and Parliament allow it to happen.
 “VERY IRRESPONSIBLE”
FOR (IRISH) POLITICIANS TO
“FORCE & THREATEN THE UK”
Live TV clash between former minister & Irish MEP
Mairead McGuinness MEP and Rt Hon Owen Paterson MP             Screengrab from © BBC 2017
Today the BBC’s Sunday Politics gave a slot for Irish MEP Mairead McGuinness to make a film. Ms McGuinness, who is also a Vice-President of the EU Parliament, used the time given to her by the BBC to make the EU and Irish government’s case against Brexit, specifically in relation to Ireland and Northern Ireland.
Following the film, the Rt Hon Owen Paterson MP, former Secretary of State for Agriculture and - most importantly - former Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, was then interviewed along with Ms McGuinness.
Ms McGuinness had the time of the film slot, as well as the time in the joint interview where she dominated the time. The pro-Brexit case put by a British MP was therefore given far less time than was given to the Irish MEP and VP of the EU parliament, but this was the BBC so it was to be expected.
Despite being given very little time, Owen Paterson was magnificent.
OBSERVATIONS
We have yet to hear anyone from the EU counter the arguments made by the likes of Owen Paterson. As we wrote in a piece we published overnight, the border simply isn’t an issue – not unless the EU wants to make it one.
No-one from the British side wants to install the paraphernalia of a fully-fledged and manned border between Northern Ireland and the South. If a physical border happens it will be one imposed by the EU and Eire, and not by the UK.
To defend British interests on British television we all have to rely on people like Owen Paterson, as the British government simply doesn’t provide any kind of responses to the propaganda of the EU. In our opinion Owen is currently doing an excellent job making the arguments on Northern Ireland, fisheries, agriculture and trade, amongst other issues.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: BBC ]        1.55pm, 26 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 26 Nov 2017, 10.16pm
Message: The Irish MEP Mairead McGuinness said that the Northern Ireland must stay in the Single Market and the Customs Union, if we do that we have not left the clutches of the EU. What part of the UK is leaving the EU does this woman not understand. 17.4 million people in the UK voted to leave, that's more than 3 times the population of Eire. We want out, we are the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland we voted once in a mandate, which the Prime Minister David Cameron, said he would honour. Unlike Eire where the EU made the electorate vote again to get the right result. It's in Eire's interest to get Britain a good deal, that way they can carry on trading with us and have a frictionless border. Either way the UK is leaving and becoming a free country again.
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 26 Nov 2017, 4.24pm
Message: Listening to the discussion from a historical point of view, this sensitive Northern Ireland issue is reminiscent of a Machiavellian narrative used in German propaganda during 1938/9, namely the Polish corridor and province of Sudetenland. The German propaganda machine went into overdrive to provoke political and civil unrest. They wilfully used so-called people's angst, to boil the proverbial interventionist pot, this to gain the Political initiative... the rest is history! Clearly, this is another propaganda instrument to gain the upper hand in the Brexit negotiations. The sad part, it is slowly driving a wedge between the peoples of Northern Ireland and rUK against Eire and vice versa! No doubt in my mind the people will lose out again for political expediency!
YOUR SUNDAY EDITION OF
BREXIT FACTS4EU.ORG!
It's Sunday. Settle down with a nice cup of coffee or tea and enjoy more unique and original pieces of analysis from Brexit Facts4EU.Org.
We hope you find the articles interesting. If not, please keep that to yourself as we worked all night on this as usual ! Best wishes, the Brexit Facts4EU.Org Team, Sunday 26 Nov 2017, 06.45am
 BBC GOES BANANAS
Most days we have to look at what the BBC is saying
This is not something we generally spend very long on, because we long ago lost any respect for the national broadcaster as a source of informative and impartial news.
Sometimes we take a screengrab of the BBC's news website, as we did again during last night. We think we might start publishing these from time to time. Here's last night's:-
             © BBC
As you can see, the BBC managed once again to find some depressing anti-Brexit story to write about.
Chin up, you're reading Facts4EU.Org where at least you get some real facts!
[ Sources: BBC website ]        06.45am, Sunday 26 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Carole, Liverpool      Date/Time: 26 Nov 2017, 11.28am
Message: I constantly have to turn BBC News off. This morning some Remainer was trying to tell me that Leavers on the street don't care about the ECJ and it was a stupid red line getting in the way of everything.
Name: Ashley, Great Britain      Date/Time: 26 Nov 2017, 09.17am
Message: I would rather have Australian bent bananas any day!
 IRISH FIDDLING
WHILE MRS MAY
PLAYS WITH MATCHES
UPDATE ON IRISH VETO OF BREXIT DEAL
Simon Coveney, Irish Foreign and Trade Minister on Friday in Brussels             Photo © EU Council 2017
The Irish government remains on the point of collapsing
as result of internal political issues which have nothing to do with Brexit.
IRISH GOVERNMENT CRISIS AND BREXIT :-
  • The UK is caught up, as Irish politicians vie with each other to sound tough on Brexit.
  • Irish PM and Foreign Minister make it clear they won’t back EU trade talks with UK
  • British Prime Minister’s office goes soft on Ireland
The Irish government looks set to collapse next week although an accommodation will probably be found at the last minute, as the main parties are not anxious for an early election. The rhetoric from Irish politicians towards the UK has noticeably hardened, to the point where they are in danger of causing as much damage to their economy as was caused by their banking collapse following 2008.
1. HERE IS WHAT THE IRISH HAVE BEEN SAYING
Watch Irish foreign minister talking Brexit in Brussels
Approx 7 mins - © EU Council
Simon Coveney, Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, insisted that EU leaders would not give the green light for the full Brexit negotiations including trade to begin at the EU Summit in December unless there was progress on the border issue.
HERE ARE SOME EXCERPTS:
“We can't move to phase two on the basis of aspiration. We have move to phase two on the basis of a credible road map or the parameters around which we can design a credible road map to ensure that it doesn't happen.”
“The truth is that if we see regulatory divergence between the two jurisdictions on the island of Ireland it is very hard to see in that scenario how you avoid hard border checks. So we need progress on this issue in the context of the regulatory divergence issues.”
“I hope and expect that we can get that by December so that we can all move on. If we can't, then I think there is going to be a difficulty coming up.”
“I don't think Ireland will have to block anything on its own. There is absolute solidarity across 27 countries here. They are with Ireland on this.”
“We are not talking about a 'no deal' here. What we are talking about is whether we can move on to opening up phase two in parallel with phase one issues in December. Without sufficient progress on the Irish issues that can't happen.”
Simon Coveney, Irish Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Brussels, 24 Nov 2017
2. HOW THE UK RESCUED IRELAND IN 2010
Almost exactly seven years ago, a total of £7 billion was lent by the UK (George Osborne) to the Republic of Ireland – bilaterally and as part of an international package – to rescue the neighbouring state’s collapsing economy.
In addition, between 2009 and 2011, RBS made "capital contributions" totalling £7.6bn to its Dublin-headquartered subsidiary Ulster Bank Ireland and Lloyds transferred £6.4bn to its Bank of Scotland (Ireland), before dissolving the business. That's a total of an extra £14bn.
TOTAL VALUE OF UK’S RESCUE OF IRISH ECONOMY: OVER £20BN
3. WHAT THE BRITISH GOVERNMENT HAS NOW BEEN SAYING
On Friday Theresa May’s spokesman made an extraordinary statement. He was asked if Northern Ireland could stay in the customs union after Brexit, and he replied:
That is a matter for negotiations. Our position on Northern Ireland has been set out in the papers and we need to continue to negotiate to find an innovative way forward.”
Given that this is such an explosive issue, No.10 was forced to issue a ‘clarification’ later, insisting that the Government's position that the whole of the UK will leave both the customs union and single market after Brexit has not changed.
Both the EU and the Irish government has been talking about Northern Ireland having a different status in respect of the Customs Union, to that of the rest of the UK. This could have the effect of placing the border in the middle of the Irish Sea, and partially cutting off Northern Ireland.
OBSERVATIONS
Firstly, we simply don't understand the incompetence of the government machine right now. When the No.10 spokesman is asked if Northern Ireland could stay in the customs union after Brexit, the answer is simple. NO.
If Northern Ireland stays in the customs union after Brexit, it will no longer be a fully-fledged member of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. This is precisely what many Irish and EU politicians would like to achieve.
So, Northern Ireland staying in the customs union in any way, shape or form isn't a matter for negotiation. To imply in any way (or in this case to say it directly) that something is 'for negotiation' just opens the door wide. The EU will instantly smell weakness and will drive a coach and horses through.
TO THE IRISH GOVERNMENT
We repeat our observations addressed to Irish PM Leo Varadkar from our article a week ago:
© Sky News 2017
“Whether you like it or not Mr Varadkar, Brexit Britain is going to be a stunning success. Try to thwart us now and your actions will not be forgotten when you need us most. If however you realise your mistake quickly and start to side with the UK as you should, then Anglo-Irish relations will go back to their happy, normal self, and Ireland could soon find itself sharing in the prosperity of the post-Brexit world.”
We think it extremely unwise for Ireland, a country whose economy would virtually collapse without the trade and the goodwill of the British, to play these dangerous games. We also think it the height of bad manners for their politicians to behave in this way, given the UK’s prominent role in keeping Ireland from going bankrupt just seven short years ago.
The border is a non-issue. It is solvable with some modern technology and anyone who tells you different is simply playing politics. The precise details can be worked out once the full nature of the UK’s trading relationship with the EU has been resolved. In turn, this trading relationship can only be resolved if the EU ever stop playing silly bureaucrats and start to get real.
The solution is therefore in the hands of the EU.
We must stress that in this article once again we are talking about politicians, not the people of the country. The EU elites must stop their games where they seek to punish the UK at every turn, and Irish politicians must stop playing politics with the hard-won peace on that island.
TO THE PRIME MINISTER
 
Finally, to the British government: You MUST wake up and stop trying to be friends to people who clearly only wish us harm. For heaven’s sake start showing some of the steel which is present across the country. You will never get any respect and you certainly won’t get any kind of vaguely reasonable deal unless you start acting your country’s strength.
Left: Mrs May in Brussels on Friday
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 Commission | EU Council | No.10 | Irish Times ]
     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual.

       06.45am, 26 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: David Price, UK      Date/Time: 26 Nov 2017, 08.09am
Message: Even if these Irish politicians recant, their clear underlying attitude to the UK and it's people will not change. Before I was neutral with regards to Ireland but now I can only take the only real actions to show my disgust at these antics in the face of the enormous contributions from British taxpayers which is to withdraw my custom wherever I can, modify my vocational activities to avoid trade and to lobby my MP when I can. Much of Asda beef comes from Ireland so I will take my meat custom elsewhere. I don't buy Apple goods anyway but I will be reviewing my investments to see if there are any Irish domiciled funds and I will redirect to other investment. I will be applying the same discriminatory approach to goods and services from any other EU country that has adopted an unreasonable attitude to the UK. So far that is Germany, France, Spain, Belgium (blame Verhofstadt) and now Ireland.
 A C GRAYLING
DECONSTRUCTED
Academia: signs of the strain of Remoanerism
             Photo © YouTube / Carnegie Council
A LESSON IN DEMOCRACY
INTRODUCTION
Regular readers know that we specialise in reducing the arguments about Brexit and the EU into what we hope are bite-sized chunks. Sometimes we have to write longer pieces when the subject is complex, but then we can usually break things up with images and graphs.
As a break from our normal output, the article below takes a look at one of the better-known examples of academia's infestation with Remoanerism: the philosopher A. C. Grayling.
One of our readers and a 5-star VIP supporter of Facts4EU.Org, Michael Donnan, has taken a look at Grayling's views on democracy as a reason to have voted Leave. We hope you enjoy his article.
Thoughts on A. C. Grayling’s
“Deconstruction” of a Brexit ‘Leave’ Argument
By Michael Donnan
In October 2017, the British philosopher and anti-Brexit campaigner Professor A. C. Grayling gave a talk in New York entitled “Democracy and its Crisis”. The text of the talk is available on the website of the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs [1].
The talk was interesting enough (and I applaud his defence, during the Q&A session, of freedom of expression) but what took my notice in particular was his response to a question relating to democracy as a reason for having voted ‘Leave’ in the 2016 Referendum. This question and the response feature in a video entitled “A. C. Grayling Deconstructs an Argument for the Brexit ‘Leave’ Vote” [2]. I thought it would be interesting to examine Grayling’s “deconstruction”.
HERE IS THE VIDEO OF THE QUESTION - AND A C GRAYLING'S ANSWER
Approx 5 mins - © YouTube / Carnegie Council
"BRINGING BACK DEMOCRACY"
The lady who raised the question said that she has: “a lot of friends in England who voted for Brexit who are neither ill-educated, ill-informed, or even poor, and their reason for it was that it was democracy — aside from the 53 percent and who stayed home because it was raining — because it was making government more accountable locally. It was getting rid of the yoke ... of an unaccountable, unelected, micromanaging group in Brussels, and bringing it back to a more authentic democracy”.
Grayling was then invited to comment but before looking at his response, I need to make three observations.
  1. The question was not about the legitimacy of the 2016 Referendum. This should be clear immediately, and the questioner’s remark introduced by the word “aside” puts it beyond doubt.
  2. The question was not about UK parliamentary sovereignty.
  3. The question was about democratic accountability (a notion that is conceptually distinct from that of parliamentary sovereignty [3]): the lady’s English friends would seem to have placed a high value on our representatives in the legislature being elected, not appointed, and being accountable. Such accountability is achieved in the UK by members of parliament having periodically to stand for re-election on their record, with the possibility of rejection by the electorate. Indeed, Grayling is well aware of this notion of democratic accountability, for in the body of his talk he says, with reference to our elected representatives in the legislature, “.... if we do not like what they do, we can kick them out next time, and we can put in their place somebody who will do a better job for us”.
GRAYLING'S 'FRANCHISE' ARGUMENT'
Grayling starts his response by trotting out his party piece criticising the franchise adopted for the Referendum, the absence in the Referendum legislation of a threshold requirement, and the Government’s acceptance of the Referendum result as mandating Brexit. All this was irrelevant to the substance of the question. However, I cannot resist noting that one of Grayling’s objections to the Referendum franchise is that 16 to 17-year olds were denied a say [4]. However, in his talk, Grayling remarks: “I rather think that the voting age should be 16, but it should be accompanied, of course, by a very rich offer of civic education in politics and government.” That implies that such a rich civic education is a necessary condition for lowering the voting age to 16. However, at the time of the 2016 Referendum it could not have been seriously contended that our schools actually were offering a rich civic education in politics and government, and therefore Grayling’s necessary condition was not met. It follows that 16-17-year olds should not have had a Referendum vote.
Grayling then asserts that: “Some of the arguments about sovereignty, taking back control and escaping the rule of Brussels and so on, are sheer distortions, mainly the result of the tabloid press .... Because it has never been the case that any of the sovereign Member States of the European Union have been under the inescapable control of Brussels”. Grayling has thus shifted from the Referendum to sovereignty. At this point, of course, one must concede that since the introduction of Article 50 by the Lisbon Treaty, any member state does at least now have a clear legal right to “escape” from the European Union. However, there is more to be said and I shall return to the question of sovereignty below.
Grayling continues: “The Secretariat in Brussels .... carries out the requirements of the Council of Ministers, which are all the Member State governments who jointly put forward European Union legislation and has [sic] it ratified by the European Parliament, whose members are voted by citizens of all the Member States. So, it is actually a more democratic system than the UK system is because we have .... the first-past-the-post voting system, which means that successive governments are always voted in a minority”.
After a brief digression in order to criticise the first-past-the-post system, Grayling adds: “It is not what happens in Europe. Europe is proportionally represented. The Council of Ministers, the heads of state of the European governments, are the ones who formulate policy. Brussels, this metaphor that people use, merely carries out—it is a civil service—the instructions of the Council of Ministers”.
One cannot of course expect an off-the-cuff response in a Q&A session to be meticulous and exhaustive. Also, it is possible that Grayling was seeking to provide a simplified, non-technical answer for his American audience. Allowing for this, I consider that his account still leaves a lot to be desired.
THE EU AS MORE DEMOCRATIC THAN THE UK...? REALLY?
First, when Grayling suggests that the European Parliament is more democratic than the UK Parliament, he is not comparing like with like. As Professor Alina Kaczorowska-Ireland puts it, the European Parliament, “unlike national parliaments, is not a real, sovereign parliament as it neither has power to initiate and enact legislation, nor to impose taxes” [5].
Second, the statement that “Europe is proportionally represented” needs a qualification that Grayling omits. Elections to the European Parliament are on a principle of ‘degressive proportionality’; see Article 14 of the consolidated Treaty on European Union (TEU). The distribution of seats is proportionate to the size of the national populations but this proportionality is constrained by the requirement that each state will have at least 6 seats and that no state will have more than 96 seats [6A]. According to the German Federal Constitutional Court, the European Union “lacks a political decision-making body created in equal elections by all citizens of the Union and with the ability to uniformly represent the will of the people” [6B].
Third, the institution whose members are the heads of state or government of the member states and whose role is to formulate policy is the European Council, not the Council of Ministers. See Article 15 of TEU. The European Council does not take part in the EU’s ordinary legislative procedure. The Council of Ministers is now called the Council of the European Union or (as in Article 16 TEU) just the Council. Its members are government ministers from each member state, which ministers will vary depending on the policy area to be discussed.
Fourth, in the ordinary legislative procedure of the EU it is not the case that (in Grayling’s words) “all the Member State governments .... jointly put forward European Union legislation and has [sic] it ratified by the European Parliament”. The ordinary legislative procedure in the EU crucially involves an institution which Grayling, astonishingly, fails to mention, namely the European Commission. Article 17, paragraph 2, TEU provides that “Union legislative acts may only be adopted on the basis of a Commission proposal, except where the Treaties provide otherwise”. Thus, in the ordinary legislative procedure, both the Council and the European Parliament consider legislation that has been proposed by the Commission.
Fifth, the members of the Commission are “chosen” (Article 17, paragraph 3). They are not elected by the EU citizens who enjoy the European Parliament franchise, nor can those citizens vote out of office any of the Commissioners. Therefore, and unlike our Members of Parliament, the Commissioners are unelected by, and unaccountable to, the electorate.
And that is surely the point that caused the questioner’s friends such concern.
As a final flourish, Grayling returns to the matter of sovereignty and refers to Section 2, paragraph 1, of a white paper published by the UK government regarding the Article 50 Bill [7]. This says: “The sovereignty of Parliament is a fundamental principle of the UK constitution. Whilst Parliament has remained sovereign throughout our membership of the EU, it has not always felt like that”. At this, one feels the temptation to adapt Mandy Rice-Davies’s infamous remark and suggest that “well, they would say that, wouldn’t they?”. What government is going to admit to transferring sovereignty to a foreign power? However, Grayling deserves a more considered response.
The contention that parliamentary sovereignty has been preserved is based on the fact that the UK’s membership is governed by the European Communities Act 1972. However, the UK European Union Act 2011 is understood to confirm that the supremacy of EU law over UK national law is recognised only by virtue of the 1972 Act, and, so the argument goes, since the UK Parliament can repeal the 1972 Act (as is the current intention), Parliament retains its sovereignty. However, the fact that the Government could throw off the EU shackles at a future date does not conflict with the fact that it is shackled now.
Accordingly, Grayling ignores the important distinction between the situation that obtains when the 1972 Act is in force and the UK remains a member of the EU and the situation that would obtain if the 1972 Act were repealed and the UK left the EU. The purpose of voting ‘Leave’ was to move the UK from the first situation – in which legislation promulgated by the European Union takes precedence over legislation promulgated by the UK Parliament and cannot be repealed by the UK Parliament – to the second, in which the law promulgated by the UK Parliament is supreme.
The white paper rather gives the game away in the preamble to Section 2, which preamble assures us that the UK Government “will take control of our own affairs .... and bring an end to the jurisdiction in the UK of the Court of Justice of the European Union”. The Government’s pledge to “take control of our own affairs” implies that the Government does not have full control at this time. And if Parliament does not have full control over its own affairs, it is not unreasonable to maintain that it has relinquished at least a measure of control and to that extent currently lacks full sovereignty.
Michael Donnan Esq, for Brexit Facts4EU.Org, 26 Nov 2017
SOURCES: 1. https://www.carnegiecouncil.org/studio/multimedia/20171026-democracy-and-its-crisis-ac-grayling | 2. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E0YKwKiYISY | 3. This is easily demonstrated. Consider a parliament composed entirely of people appointed for life: it could well be sovereign if not subject to any foreign influence but it would not be democratically accountable. | 4. A. C. Grayling, “Open Letter to Theresa May”, 09 August 2016, sixth paragraph; http://www.acgrayling.com/open-letter-to-theresa-may | 5. Kaczorowska-Ireland, Alina, European Union Law, Fourth Edition, Routledge (2016), Section 3.3. | 6A. Schütze, Robert, Constitutionalism and the European Union, Chapter 4 in Barnard, Catherine and Peers, Steve (editors), European Union Law, Oxford University Press, Second Edition (2017) at page 82. | 6B. As reported in Schütze, op. cit., Case Study 4.2 at page 83. | 7. “The United Kingdom’s exit from and new partnership with the European Union”, Cm 9417, February 2017.
OBSERVATIONS
We love the smell of democracy on a Sunday morning!
The author of the above piece, Michael Donnan, is a successful, intelligent and well-educated man as you might guess from his writing. In his piece he is far too polite to criticise Grayling strongly. This is of course a typical attribute of most Brexiteers, in sharp contrast with Remoaners like Grayling who are often abusive and insulting, alas.
We find it very disappointing that so many people who enjoy the limelight and whose intelligence we would not normally question have been so subverted by Remoanerism that they seem to have lost any sense of logic or reason. Week after week we hear or see academics - or those in positions requiring a reasonable degree of intelligence - desperately trying to justify some unjustifiable position in relation to Brexit or the EU.
The vast majority clearly have almost no knowledge of the EU, or at least not the EU in its practical rather than hypothetical workings. The supreme irony of course is that these are the very people who think nothing of belittling Leave voters as ignorant, old and ill-educated.
WHY ACADEMICS LIKE GRAYLING CAN'T LECTURE US
One of the ways the ignorance shows from those who think they're highly intelligent and knowledgeable about the EU is that they rely on what they read.
It's absurd for these people to comment on the EU on this basis. Let's cite just one example. Where in any EU Treaty, Directive, Law, or any other EU document whatsoever did it say that no full and substantive discussions can take place with an exiting country, before the agreement of three arbitrary items selected by the EU?
And yet that's the situation the UK has been in for most of this year. There have been no proper talks while the EU obsesses about a financial settlement, and the issues of citizens rights and the Northern Ireland border. This bizarre restriction is another EU fabrication, invented after the British people had the nerve to vote Leave. The EU refuses to hold proper negotiations with the UK - on no legal basis whatsoever. THIS is the reality of the EU, not the idyllic, tortuous, Jesuitical nonsense from the Graylings in their ivory tower worlds.
We're afraid that we have little time for a man who has to put rows of academic books as his profile picture on his Twitter account, presumably so that we might infer he's well-read.
Bizarrely, Grayling's Twitter account consists mainly of re-tweets of the ill-informed ramblings of other Remoaners. He did have one thought of his own, though, which he 'pinned' at the top of his tweets. Brace yourselves, here it is:
             © Twitter
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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.
       06.45am, 26 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 26 Nov 2017, 3.28pm
Message: A quote from Thomas Sowell: "It is hard to imagine a more stupid or more dangerous way of making decisions than by putting those decisions in the hands of people who pay no price for being wrong." This is the EU, ably supported by these deluded, self-indulgent protagonist clods; such as A. C. Grayling!
Name: David Reason, Renfrewshire      Date/Time: 26 Nov 2017, 10.51am
Message: Your fourth point is one that was mentioned in the campaign last year but not often since. The unelected Commission is the body that puts forward legislation. Look at the people in the Commission. There's an article on this site about Mrs Mogherini who is the EU's 'High Representative' and Vice-President. All wrong and yet Grayling just can't see it.
Name: Jenny P, Dorset      Date/Time: 26 Nov 2017, 10.26am
Message: Very good article. You destroyed his arguments which I have to say were very weak anyway. One of the Facts4EU 'Observations' is on the button - When it comes to Brexit some very smart people seem to have lost their ability to reason and debate based on facts and logic. Enjoyable article Michael, thank you.
 Another Facts4EU.Org Exclusive
2 FORMER COMMUNISTS
NOW RUN
EUROPEAN DEFENCE
AND THEY ARE BOTH PASSIONATE EU-LOVERS
             Photo © NATO 2017
The one on the left runs EU Defence & Foreign Policy. The one on the right runs NATO.
This article concerns two of the biggest Europhiles you can meet. Between them, they’re rapidly re-organising European defence.
Former Communists Jens Stoltenberg and Federica Mogherini are true and passionate believers in the EU ‘project’. This would not necessarily be a problem if they weren’t also the biggest players in the fast-changing landscape of European defence.
JENS STOLTENBERG, SECRETARY-GENERAL OF NATO:
“So we have concluded more arrangements in the past three months than in the previous thirteen years. And I think that indicates that we are making progress in the EU-NATO cooperation.”
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, at an EU meeting, 20 May 2017
FEDERICA MOGHERINI, EU VICE-PRESIDENT & DE FACTO DEFENCE CHIEF:
“Over this past year our common [EU] defence has advanced more than in the previous 60 years.”
EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Official 2017 video
WHO IS JENS STOLTENBERG?
Jens Stoltenberg is a Norwegian who started his political life following a revolutionary Communist group called Red Youth. Later, for 4 years he was the leader of the Workers' Youth League, before eventually rising to become a minister in Norway’s Labour government. He was Prime Minister from 2000-2001 and from 2005-2013.
A fervent Europhile, he twice campaigned in referenda – unsuccessfully - for Norway to join the EU. He remains an ardent Europhile to this day, despite his own countrymen's opposition.
STOLTENBERG AS NATO SEC-GEN CAMPAIGNED IN THE UK FOR REMAIN
Extraordinarily, Mr Stoltenberg intervened in the UK’s Referendum, most memorably on the day before the vote itself. On June 22nd 2016, the day before the UK went to the polls, Stoltenberg gave an interview to the Guardian newspaper in which he said the following:
“What I can do is tell you what matters for Nato, and a strong UK in a strong Europe is good for the UK and it’s good for Nato, because we are faced with unprecedented security challenges, with terrorism, with instability and an unpredictable security environment, and a fragmented Europe will add to instability and unpredictability.”
“The arrangement [Norway] now has with the European Union is that we pay a huge amount of money to the European Union. We implement EU decisions and directives, but we don’t have a say. We are not at the table,” he said.
 
ABOVE: Typically friendly (and unnecessary) Tweet from Jens Stoltenberg to EU Presidents Juncker and Tusk
“Norway actually receives more migrants compared to its size than the United Kingdom … significantly more, compared to the size. So even if you stay outside the European Union you are affected by decisions made inside Europe, and so I think it’s better to be at the table influencing those decisions and those developments instead of being outside but being affected by decisions by the European Union.”
Over the last couple of years, the Head of NATO has been a constant visitor at the EU. NATO even opened a luxury new headquarters in Brussels, conveniently close to the EU's headquarters.
             Photo © EU Council 2017
The tweet above is from Tuesday of this week. Once again Stoltenberg was at the EU, this time with EU Council President Tusk.
AND WHAT ABOUT THE EU'S FEDERICA MOGHERINI?
 
ABOVE: EU High Representative Federica Mogherini with one of her generals
LEFT: NATO has now agreed 42 combined actions with the EU
It is highly unlikely that the man or woman on the proverbial Clapham omnibus could put a name to her, but Federica Mogherini is the most powerful woman in the whole of the EU’s massive bureaucracy.
She studied political science in Italy and France and did her dissertation on Islam.
She spent the first eight years of her political life as a member of the Italian Communist Youth Federation and only changed to become a member of the Youth Left when the Italian Communist Party dissolved. She has only ever worked in politics.
MOGHERINI AND BREXIT
No friend of the UK, Ms Mogherini has said she’s looking forward to ‘having the file’ on Brexit as soon as the UK becomes what the EU refers to as ‘a third country’. Third countries instantly come under Ms Mogherini’s vast umbrella of job titles. She is High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Vice-President of the European Commission, and Head of the European External Action Service.
As such, she will be in overall charge of the EU’s relationship with the UK when the UK leaves.
OBSERVATIONS
We find it deeply disturbing that the defence of the continent of Europe is being shaped by two individuals like this. Both former Communists, both fervent supporters of the EU project.
Call us old-fashioned, but until fairly recently isn't it possible that if these individuals had applied for a job in defence, their applications would have been binned and their names would have been added to a watch list?
Yet here we are today, with NATO's Secretary-General seemingly as keen as mustard to strike ever-closer relationships with the EU and its Defence Chief Mogherini. In the last two years we can't remember a month where there wasn't an announcement of some kind of new collaboration with the EU. It has been relentless.
Even in the last week he was present at the EU's 'European Defence Agency' annual meeting and had a separate meeting with EU Council President Tusk.
We feel it necessary to point out to Mr Stoltenberg that his best friends at the EU have hardly covered themselves in glory when it comes to paying their way for European defence. If they have singularly failed in that regard for many decades, why on earth is he backing the EU in its clear plans to replace NATO in the coming years? We don't believe he's stupid, so regrettably that means he's complicit.
STOLTENBERG THE ANTI-BREXIT REMAIN CAMPAIGNER
With regard to Brexit, we found his behaviour last year wholly unacceptable for someone in his position and we felt that he should have resigned (or been fired) after his disgraceful attempt to influence the Referendum result in the UK.
Putting that to one side, we feel that his passionate europhilia makes him a unsuitable person to be involved in discussions with the EU over its massive defence ambitions, to say nothing of our qualms about his historical political beliefs.
STOLTENBERG IS UNRELENTING IN HIS EUROPHILIA
             Photo © EU Council 2017
Here is Mr Stoltenberg on 3rd May at the European Parliament. He was addressing the Committee on Foreign Affairs and the Sub-Committee on Security and Defence Committee. He couldn't resist boasting to the MEPs about what a pro-EU individual he is.
“I don’t know exactly what to say about the Norwegian model because to be honest, I fought strongly for in favour of Norway joining the European Union back in 1994. We had a referendum in Norway and as you know, Norway is the only country in the world that has negotiated an accession treaty with the European Union not only once but twice, first in ’72 and then in ’94 and then voted it down in a referendum not only once but twice and I was on the losing side both times.”
“...that’s the reason why I was so eager coming here because this is the closest I’ve come to a kind of individual membership of the European Union.”
MOGHERINI - THE FACE THAT WANTS TO LAUNCH A THOUSAND WARSHIPS?
There is something very disturbing about the thousands of pages on the EU’s website which refer in some way to the work of the EU’s External Action Service. It is hard to find a page without at least one flattering photo of Ms Mogherini.
Ms Mogherini at the EU summit yesterday              Photo © EU Council 2017
For an unelected person who has never been subject to a popular vote in the EU, she seems to be very keen to promote herself. Either that or the EU is now engaging in the cult of personality. Try it for yourself and see if it unsettles you as much as it does us. Take a look at her main Directorate webpages, the 'European External Action Service' or EEAS.
OUR MESSAGE TO UK POLITICIANS AND TO THOSE OF THE EU
The discussions between NATO and the EU are fundamental to the security of half a billion people and it is clear to us that they are not being scrutinised as they should be by NATO. Whenever the EU’s newest defence plans are mentioned all we hear from Mr Stoltenberg is bubbling enthusiasm, and this is simply not an appropriate response.
To our readers who are British MPs and MEPs, we would suggest that a very high degree of cynicism is used when looking at anything said by Mr Stoltenberg when commenting on the EU’s plans.
In our opinion the NATO Secretary-General is neither impartial, nor is he representing the interests of NATO and all of its members.
The EU is clearly engaged in a grab for military power and fully intends to replace NATO in many of its roles, no matter how it might pretend otherwise. The even more worrying part is that the UK is seemingly in agreement with absolutely everything that the EU and NATO are planning.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 Commission | EU Council | UK Parliament | Norwegian media | Italian media | NATO ]
     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual.

       06.30am, 25 November 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 25 Nov 2017, 3.41pm
Message: "As such, she will be in overall charge of the EU’s relationship with the UK when the UK leaves" The important thing is for Britain to stand fast in regards to it continuing to be the world's fifth largest economy, with heads held high, unafraid to resume its rightful place in a wider world! My only fear is that our wobbly-knees politicians continue to lack the determination and acumen to lead Britain forward!
Name: James H, UK      Date/Time: 25 Nov 2017, 11.12am
Message: Would anyone like to take a guess as to how long it will be before we see the disgusting spectacle of British troops in EU Storm-Trooper uniforms shooting at unarmed Polish civilians on the streets of Warsaw? Don't be fooled. The EU army is not to protect Europe from external threats. It is to enforce the laws of Brussels within the the EU. How quickly people seem to have forgotten the last time a totalitarian state forced its "protection" on the parts of Europe. We're sleepwalking into oblivion.
Name: Steve R, UK      Date/Time: 25 Nov 2017, 09.30am
Message: Some Norwegians were with us waiting for hours for a Spanish hire car last year. They told us that we might get Brexit in name, but in their country the politicians had quietly reversed their wishes and tied them into the EU. Stoltenberg was one of their quisling politicians.
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 25 Nov 2017, 09.01am
Message: I cannot comprehend how successive UK Prime Ministers have effectively been allowed to destroy UK military capabilities by running down our armed forces over time. To hand UK forces to a foreign power on a plate is a betrayal to our country of epic proportion. We must not allow Federica Mogherini to get her hands on them. A noteworthy point, membership of NATO is entirely voluntary. EU member countries should think very carefully before being pressured into an EU military, for then there will be no 'EU exit escape' should you choose. This is just another EU plan to ensure they create a superstate by "ever closer union", and they will not stop this 'juggernaut' unless the people stop it. Under scrutiny, one must now seriously question the appointment of former Chief Whip, the Rt Hon Gavin Williamson CBE MP, to UK Secretary of State for Defence? I wish to see ALL UK armed forces, including the hardware, removed from European Union member countries and brought back home to the UK. Defence means defending ones own country, not playing around somewhere else. In my opinion, EU military ambitions will become a VERY dangerous force which may have negative consequences to peace and stability, such as it is? As Facts4EU have previously pointed out, EU member countries have a problem paying their share towards NATO (except for the UK), so how can they possibly afford an EU military? The UK should not be part of any EU 'war-machine'. Let us remind everyone the so-called EEC of the 1970's was sold to us as a TRADING arrangement with no loss of sovereignty, and nothing more. Younger generations should read "FCO 30/1048" to see how we were deceived at that time.
 THERESA MAY,
BRUSSELS, LAST NIGHT
                                       © EU Commission
“I said we would honour our commitments,
I said that no member country need worry
that they would receive less or have to pay in more”
- UK Prime Minister Theresa May, Brussels, 24th Nov 2017
“All except the UK, that is....”
- The Brexit Facts4EU.Org Team
British Prime Minister Theresa May was in Brussels again yesterday for yet another EU summit. This one was about the EAP which we will comment on in a future article.
Whilst there, Mrs May had a one-hour meeting with EU Council President Donald Tusk to discuss the Brexit talks. Below is the video of her comments on leaving the EU building.
Approx 2 mins - © EU Council
KEY EXCERPT FROM INTERVIEW:-
“Were you able to share the consensus around the Cabinet table? Could it be €40 billion euros you’re offering?”
MRS MAY: “We’ve been talking about how we can progress the issue in relation to the financial settlement. I’ve set out the position, I did so in the Florence speech. I said we would honour our commitments, I said that no member country need worry that they would receive less or have to pay in more in the current budget plan, and that we would honour our commitments. And that’s what we’ve been talking about.”
REACTION OF EU COUNCIL PRESIDENT TUSK
Following the meeting, President Tusk tweeted the following:-
                                       © EU Commission
In effect, the EU has given the UK a final deadline of 10 days to make still more concessions.
OBSERVATIONS
Please take another look at the photo of Theresa May at yesterday's meeting between the Prime Minister and President Tusk, which comes from the Twitter account of the EU Council President. Would you be smiling if you were sitting opposite the man who was continually threatening you? We wouldn’t.
We want to make it perfectly clear to the Prime Minister that very large numbers of ordinary people simply will not accept her continual throwing of ever-larger sums of taxpayer money at the EU, for decidedly uncertain returns.
Below is the answer we sent to EU Council President Tusk yesterday, in response to his latest blackmail demand tweet.
                                       © Twitter
Please do let us know if you think we were being harsh on Donald.
So far it is only the UK which has made very generous compromise offers to the EU to encourage a normal and sensible deal on Brexit. The EU has simply hoovered up these offers, offered nothing in return, and then demanded still more concesssions for the UK.
The UK’s legal obligations are precisely zero – we owe them nothing other than our current contributions. There is no serious legal debate about this whatsoever. Even the Europhiliacs in the House of Lords were forced to admit this in their report earlier this year.
Given the hostile way in which the EU have behaved ever since the UK’s EU Referendum, we do not believe the best interests of the UK are served by making any financial gestures whatsoever to them.
If they come to their senses and are prepared to talk normally like any other international country, then perhaps some small accommodation could be made in specific return for the seamless transition to British independence, with trade carrying on as before.
If not, then their financial mess is their own affair. They should have started cutting back on their extravagant spending plans last year. The UK has much bigger fish to fry on the world stage.
In our opinion Mrs May should walk away.
                                       © EU Commission
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 ]
     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual. ]
       06.30am, 25 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 25 Nov 2017, 2.48pm
Message: I'm not sure Tusk gets it. The UK does not need the EU, the £40billion is on condition of a bespoke deal on trade and services similar to the arrangement we have now. A deal like Norway or Canada is not what the UK wants or will pay for. No deal, no £40billion in the EU coffers, simple. Once the EU Commission and Barnier understand that perhaps we will get progress. Keep threatening the UK is the best way to galvanize support for the walking away option, and WTO. The British don't do threats and we don't quit, so there is absolutely no chance of the people saying "Brexit is too hard, lets stay". Some politicians and commentators might have no resolve, or backbone, but there is no evidence in the opinion polls amongst the electorate to change course.
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 25 Nov 2017, 12.00am
Message: Not hard enough on Mr Tusk. He and others need to know "progress" from the EU side is shambolic. I am fed-up of the UK team making concessions - this is British taxpayers money they're playing with, NOT 'monopoly money'. The time has come to say NONE. This is not the way in which to do business. If I was writing to Mr Tusk, I would be requesting up to date, fully audited EU accounts (something they have a problem with), and separately, fully itemised accounts of EU assets of which the UK is a major stakeholder. Including ALL capital amounts to which the UK contributes. I would be suggesting to Mr Tusk to advise the amount he considers the European Union OWES the UK after we've been a NET contributor for over forty years? After all, they keep telling us how great the EU is! We could then see where UK taxpayers money has been spent. In addition, perhaps Mr Tusk may care to inform the UK how many billions he believes the European Union should pay for access to lucrative UK markets? Perhaps he should check this with the German Chancellor, as the UK is Germany's highest export market. I would be inclined to take all monies off the table until the EU Commission begin talking in a sensible, grown up manner, where they realise what WTO terms would mean, for them. Perhaps Mr Tusk may wish to put money on the table BEFORE holding discussions. Perhaps the UK should refuse to discuss unless there is an offer from the EU (It's what they're saying)? We too can play their juvenile games. Let us not forget a previous Mrs May kissing Juncker photo in addition to the above. Her body language gives her away, and it's all too 'friendly and cosy' considering the stream of abuse we receive. Mrs May's statement below the article headline where she states: "no [EU] member country need worry that they would receive less or have to pay in more" [to the EU budget], to me smells like a set-up, for if we take Mrs May in literal terms, where would the EU cover the loss of the UK contribution once we exit? One can only assume Mrs May intends to continue paying into the EU budget?
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 THE ‘EUROPEAN
DEFENCE AGENCY’
WHAT NICK CLEGG WILL NEVER TELL YOU
                                       © EU Commission
“Today we are building the European Union of Security and Defence.
It is not a plan anymore, it is not a dream anymore, it is reality coming true.”
Report on Annual Conference of European (sic) Defence Agency of the EU
Brussels, 23 November 2017
WE WON’T BORE YOU
Any article on the EU’s plans to become a military superpower can quickly become very boring. The reason is principally because of the way in which the EU uses acronyms and because of all the obscure structures the EU has set up. Things are very complicated – made deliberately so by the EU.
Make no mistake, this article is about what most people call:
THE EU ARMY
If you think this is an exaggeration, just look at the photo montage above. It's from the European Defence Agency's 'Activities' page.
Yesterday the annual conference of the ‘European Defence Agency’ took place in Brussels.
We show you:-
  • The scary speech by the EU’s de facto Defence Secretary
  • The UK’s involvement in this body
  • How we pay through the nose for it
SPEECH BY FORMER ITALIAN COMMUNIST
AND MOST POWERFUL WOMAN IN THE EU
                                       © EU Commission
Below you can watch a video of the speech by the de facto EU Defence Secretary, former Italian Communist Federica Mogherini, yesterday in Brussels. If you don't have time for the video, here are some of the highlights from her speech:
“Today we are building the European Union of Security and Defence. It is not a plan anymore, it is not a dream anymore, it is reality coming true.”
“The dream of our founding fathers and mothers is finally coming true – more than sixty years later. All the building blocks of a Security and Defence Union are finally there, today. We can now project and develop our defence capabilities together”
“We are building the Europe of Defence on a continental scale”
* * *
“So, when our founding fathers and mothers tried to create a European Defence Community, back in the fifties, their project was quite simple, even if very ambitious. They had in mind a European army and a European Defence Minister. That project failed almost immediately.
“I don’t need to tell you in this room why I did not re-open the debate on the European army. But I remember last year in the opening of the Conference we discussed about that… We chose another way.
“In a way, today, we are doing something that is even more ambitious, much more ambitious. We already have European missions and operations, sixteen of them, and we have created, for the first time ever ... a single command centre, here in Brussels”
“We are now working to build a truly European defence industry, a truly European defence market and a truly European defence research: the basis for a truly European defence.”
“the possibilities that the Permanent Structured Cooperation opens are immense, and I see the political will, in Member States and in all the institutions, to use this pace at the maximum possibility.”
“This is more than our founding fathers and mothers could ever imagine becoming true.”
Approx 14 mins - © EDA
READ THIS EXCERPT IF YOU READ NOTHING ELSE:
“I don’t need to tell you in this room why I did not re-open the debate on the European army. But I remember last year in the opening of the Conference we discussed about that. It would have led us to infinite theoretical discussions and disputes, and probably to nothing concrete. We chose another way. In a way, today, we are doing something that is even more ambitious, much more ambitious.”
In other words, they knew they couldn’t call it the EU Army, so they changed the name, and dressed it up in so many structures with 3-letter acronyms (and 4 and 5-letter acronyms) that even we find it hard to keep up.
And they've gone even further than they thought possible.
WHAT IS THE EUROPEAN DEFENCE AGENCY?
The European Defence Agency (EDA) is an intergovernmental agency of the Council of the European Union. Currently, 27 countries – all EU Member States except Denmark – participate in the EDA.
                                       © EU Commission
WHO RUNS THE EUROPEAN DEFENCE AGENCY?
“The Agency falls under the authority of the Council of the EU, to which it reports and from which it receives guidelines.”
“The EDA is the only EU Agency whose Steering Board meets at ministerial level. At the meetings of this governing body, Defence Ministers decide on the annual budget, the three year work programme and the annual work plan as well as on projects, programmes and new initiatives.”
NO BRITS PLEASE, WE’RE THE EU
Day-to-day management is headed by a Chief Executive. “On 9 January 2015, the High Representative / Vice President and Head of the European Defence Agency (EDA) Federica Mogherini appointed Jorge Domecq as EDA Chief Executive. He took up his function on 01 February 2015.”
The Spanish CEO Jorge Domecq was previously Ambassador of Spain to the Republic of the Philippines. The top management team are Spanish, Dutch, Belgian, German, French, and Italian.
Extraordinarily, despite the UK being the dominant military power in Europe, and despite it being the second-largest funder of this body, no British person is on the management team.
WHO PAYS FOR THE EUROPEAN DEFENCE AGENCY?
“Member States contribute to the Agency’s annual budget according to a GNP-based formula and approve its work plan,” says the Agency. Specific projects are funded separately and in addition to the running costs shown below.
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
COSTS OF THE ‘EUROPEAN DEFENCE AGENCY’
  • The UK pays for 17.6% of the costs
  • The top 5 countries pay for 73.5% of the costs
  • The top 10 countries pay for 90% of the costs
  • The remaining 17 countries pay just 10% of the total
The 17.6% contribution by the UK is based on the UK’s standard 17.6% EU contributions based on GDP.
IS THE EUROPEAN DEFENCE AGENCY ONLY OPEN TO EU MEMBERS?
No. The Agency has signed Administrative Arrangements with Norway (2006), Switzerland (2012), the Republic of Serbia (2013) and Ukraine (2015) enabling them to participate in EDA’s projects and programmes.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN THE UK LEAVES THE EU?
Good question. As with almost everything else that the UK government has signed up to in the realm of EU common defence policies, structures and funds, the MOD and the government have said nothing.
OBSERVATIONS
As with many EU organisations, once again we need to point out that the EU has misappropriated the word ‘European’ for one of its agencies. It is not of course European, it is a European Union institution.
The Mogherini speech
We are almost immune to the grandiose and megalomaniacal statements of EU unelected elites such as the Italian former Communist Federica Mogherini. However we have to keep reminding ourselves that whilst we research and analyse all these things on a daily basis, the British mainstream media by and large ignores it all. This is why we try to find videos for you, so that you can take in all the nuances of what the EU is up to.
Information matters
This is partly how the Referendum was only won by 52-48%. As we have said many times, if the British public had been properly informed about the EU over the last 40 years, the majority to leave would have been far higher.
To our EU friends reading this, we urge you to realise the huge difference in reporting about the EU in the UK, compared to continental Europe. It may be hard for you to swallow, but if the nonsense perpetrated by the EU over the years had been properly reported in the UK, the UK would have left long ago. Even now, nearly 18 months after our Referendum, the British public is still becoming aware of serious issues of which they were blissfully unaware.
Thank goodness for the Internet, or none of this would ever have seen the light of day for the ordinary man or woman in the United Kingdom.
HEADS UP: Tomorrow we will be publishing a shocking piece about NATO and the EU. You do not want to miss it! We will also be publishing further pieces embarrassing to Messrs Clegg and Cameron, on the subject of defence.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 Commission | EDA | NATO | MOD | Norwegian Ministry of Defence | Swiss Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sports | Republic of Serbia, Ministry of Defence | Ukrainian Ministry of Defence ]
     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual. ]
       07.15am, 24 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 25 Nov 2017, 04.31am
Message: I believe I was perhaps correct to be pessimistic about the 'Euro defence' issue, as Mrs May [UK PM] appears to be caving in to unelected European Union bureaucrats. They say jump, she says how high. At times it makes me ashamed to be British. With respect to Mrs May, she should LEARN TO SAY "NO"? She should also learn to say, 'THERE IS NO EXIT BILL'? We need only pay our usual contribution to 2020, but we exit in March 2019. We have our own domestic issues in the UK that require funding, and lots of it, so I WHOLLY OBJECT to Mrs May continuing to give away further £billions to continental Europe, and £millions for this, that, or the other. Not forgetting the massive 'Foreign Aid' budget which I believe MUST support our NHS at once? We're leaving their political union yet I get the impression (rightly or wrongly), the EU are developing schemes Mrs May appears to be part-funding with British taxpayers money. IN OTHER WORDS, it's another way the EU are attempting to force Brits to pay for THEIR EU project as they know time is running out. I am rightly concerned WHO is paying for their 'united states of Europe' military, because presently it looks like the UK is funding much of it? Many UK politicians are not screaming loud enough about this? All of us who insist on a 'CLEAN' Brexit should be slightly annoyed at this sell-out? Is there any real difference between Sir Edward Heath [former UK PM] who sold out our country in the 1970's, and gave away our territorial waters which destroyed our once thriving fishing industry, than of the actions (or inactions) taken by Mrs May? We voted exit in the largest democratic expression in British history. What part of 'EXIT' do MPs not understand? As the EU have threatened to withhold our rebate, then in my considered opinion Mrs May should withhold ALL FUNDING to the EU immediately, until they retract their threat? Mrs May needs to 'play dirty', because that's sure what the EU are doing, but does she realise it?
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 24 Nov 2017, 1.33pm
Message: A very interesting comment from Federica Mogherini in the Politico: "Brexit didn’t defeat the EU, she added. It now has a global strategy — her global strategy — and the European Commission’s white paper on the future of the Europe was broadly seen as a success. We are in a better place now though and we can still improve things a lot.” (sic). The EU continues to seek relevance beyond Europe....a military option gains that global creditability! Not only does the EU desire to become a "United States of Europe" through a political strategy, an Economic strategy, a Legal entity, etc., but now (at last they have revealed their true nature) the reality of creating a powerful military force that gives them teeth in geopolitics! The EU’s surreptitious tapestry of annexing Nation State functions is coming to fruition, brought on more urgently by Brexit; this before the other nations wise up to what is going on? The Brexit shock was not just a financial threat to the EU’s Economic stability (read - politically motivated “essential” EU project expenditure), but equally to do with the EU's global strategic direction and of course the possible breakaway of other Union Nations. Britain (with its Neoliberalism and its curious alliance to the USA’s Neo-protectionism) poses a major threat to the EU's geopolitical ambitions; though the UK government is playing fully into the EU’s hands, by rolling their military machine and arms manufacturing (a serious part of the negotiations) into the Brussel’s land grab control? This suicidal megalomania is very frightening! Is history repeating itself perhaps?
Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 24 Nov 2017, 11.00am
Message: I read an EU document 2 years ago, which stated that this Defence Agency will have the power to enter any country without consulting the Government of the country, to police any event,or political gathering that the EU does not approve of. I wonder if this still applies.
Name: Steve R, UK      Date/Time: 24 Nov 2017, 10.18am
Message: How odd that a Conservative government has signed us up to pay prortionally more than Germany and France to pay for an army run by other countries and with projects chosen by an ex?-communist EU fanatic, especially when she wants to involve the Ukraine. How long before they take the fight to nationalist Russia in the civil war they have provoked? They now have the French H bomb and are after the UK deterrent too. Nationalists against communists again but the other way round. Scary.
Name: Shieldsman, UK      Date/Time: 24 Nov 2017, 09.33am
Message: "As with many EU organisations, once again we need to point out that the EU has misappropriated the word ‘European’ for one of its agencies. It is not of course European, it is a European Union institution". In so many areas it started as a cooperative venture between a group of 'European' Countries, not the European Union, often with the UK making the greatest contribution. Along comes the Commissions Brussels bureaucracy and writes the rules, the Brussels/Strasbourg Parliament rubber stamp them, and a defacto take over has taken place. In Civil Aviation this is very evident.
 BREXIT ON THE CHEAP
THE FACTS4EU.ORG GUIDE TO
THE HAMMOND ‘BREXITLESS BUDGET’
Facts4EU.Org has taken a look at yesterday’s budget speech from the Rt Hon Philip Hammond MP together with its accompanying documents, tables, and spreadsheets.
BUDGET - Brexit Facts4EU.Org Quick Summary:-
  • DExEU – the Dept for Exiting the EU – will have the smallest budget of any Government Dept
  • Hammond has committed 0.013% of government spending on Brexit this year
  • Extra budget for each Dept to prepare for Brexit will stop in 2019
  • But UK payments to EU shown to continue until at least 2022
We made some interesting discoveries, which might perhaps shed some light on how the government views Brexit and why progress so far has been what it has been.
1. DExEU – THE POOR RELATION IN WHITEHALL
The departmental budget for the Dept for Exiting the EU (DExEU) has been set by the Treasury at just £100m per year. This makes it the lowest-funded department of all the government departments in Whitehall.
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
As you can see, the Brexit department ('DExEU') led by Rt Hon David Davis MP has the smallest budget by far.
  • DFID (Foreign Aid) gets 76 times more
  • Culture, Media and Sport gets 14 times more
  • Even the Law Officers Department gets 6 times more
2. CHANCELLOR HAMMOND ALLOCATES PEANUTS TO BREXIT
The government will say that DExEU is merely a central management point, and that most of the money for preparing for Brexit will be spent by other government departments. The latter point may be partly true – for example new customs arrangements will fall under HMRC – but the budget for the other departments is pitiful too.
In simple terms, the Budget papers show that a total amount of just £3.6bn has been allocated by Mr Hammond for Brexit expenditure over the next six years from 2017-18 to 2022-23.
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
Within this, we’ve made the assumption that the £0.1 bn per annum DExEU Dept budget will continue after 2019-20, although in fact the Budget papers don’t say that.
To put this into context for you, the total 6-years Brexit spending of £3.6bn represents 0.07% of total government spending over those years. If you only look at this year, 2017-18, the percentage is just 0.013%.
Here is what Mr Hammond and HM Treasury say about Brexit:-
"2.16 Preparing for EU exit"
“The government is approaching the EU exit negotiations anticipating success. The government does not want or expect to leave without a deal, but while it seeks a new partnership, it is planning for a range of outcomes, as is the responsible thing to do. To support the preparations, nearly £700 million of additional funding has been provided to date. Details of additional departmental funding will be set out as part of the 2017-18 Supplementary Estimates process in the usual way.
“The Budget sets aside a further £3 billion to ensure that the government can continue to prepare effectively for EU exit. £1.5 billion of additional funding will be made available in each of 2018-19 and 2019-20.
“Departmental allocations for preparing for EU exit in 2018-19 will be agreed in early 2018. Ahead of these allocations, government departments will continue to refine their 2018-19 plans with the support of HM Treasury and the Department for Exiting the European Union. Details of additional departmental funding will be set out as part of the 2018-19 Supplementary Estimates process in the usual way. Departmental allocations for 2019-20 will be agreed later in 2018-19, when there is more certainty on the status of our future relationship with the EU.”
3. BUDGET FOR BREXIT ASSISTANCE STOPS IN 2019
In its section on “Preparing for EU Exit”, the Treasury says “To support the preparations, nearly £700 million of additional funding has been provided to date.”Unfortunately it doesn’t tell us how this has been allocated across departments. Equally regrettably, when you look at the expenditure charts, this £700m simply does not exist under any Brexit classification in the tables.
They go on to say that “The Budget sets aside a further £3 billion to ensure that the government can continue to prepare effectively for EU exit. £1.5 billion of additional funding will be made available in each of 2018-19 and 2019-20.”
Bizarrely, no expenditure in respect of Brexit has been programmed after 2019-20.
Below is the chart for the Brexit expenditure contained in the Budget, excluding the £0.1m per annum admin cost of the DExEU Dept itself.
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
It seems a little strange that no monies have been budgeted to assist with the Brexit process after Brexit, particularly given that it was Mr Hammond who was so keen on a lengthy 'Transition Period' after 29th March 2019.
4. BUDGET TABLES SHOW UK CONTRIBUTIONS TO EU CONTINUING
As Jacob Rees-Mogg pointed out in Parliament yesterday, there is a line In the Budget tables from the Office for Budget Responsibility which shows UK payments to the EU continuing after 2019. This line shows the UK continuing to pay what are known as ‘Traditional Own Resources’ (TOR) payments of £3.5bn per year every year up to 2023 when the forecasts end.
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
Here is Mr Rees-Mogg on this subject:
© Parliament
OBSERVATIONS
We leave others to comment on all the other various elements of the Budget and the government’s overall economic policies.
Our role is to provide a Brexit analysis only, and this can only be a summary rather than a full analysis, as we receive no funding from any organisations, companies, quangos, government departments, or media organisations. The only monies we receive are occasional small sums from our readers, which at present are not enough to keep us going.
That said, we hope you found the above analysis useful. At least it’s unique and original. Where else today did you read something which made you question the financial resources which Mr Hammond is (or rather is not) applying to Brexit?
And this matters because politicians and mainstream journalists are reading this.
Facts4EU.Org influences the debate.
KEY TAKEAWAYS
You’ve learnt that DexEU has the smallest budget of any government department, despite Brexit being the biggest issue in the minds of the public, according to all major surveys.
You’ve learnt that DExEU receives only £100m per year – and that even the Law Officers Department gets 6 times more than that.
And you’ve learnt that the Budget tables show the Chancellor allocating a small amount of Brexit assistance monies for the next two years and then stopping, whereas they show much larger sums still being sent to the EU for years after that.
Maybe you think it’s been worth us researching and working on this solidly since yesterday afternoon. If so, we hope you might feel able to support our work with a small contribution. Sorry to keep asking, but we’re desperate. If nothing changes we’ll simply have to give up and go back to concentrating 100% on our day jobs.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: HM Treasury | OBR | ONS ]     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual. ]
       07.15am, 23 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 24 Nov 2017, 10.31am
Message: Could the ‘Traditional Own Resources’ TOR figure of £3.5 billion that appears in the Budget Red Book, relate to EU programmes that previous UK Governments have signed up to without telling Parliament? What other programmes like the EU army, have been entered into? We only knew officially about that programme when it was announced, after being formed. To form an army takes considerable planning and monetary resources and it is inconceivable that there wasn't a special budget for that. We were told by former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, the army was a "dangerous fantasy a lie", we now know differently. The UK Government I suspect did know, and supported the Project but just didn't tell Parliament or us the people, who pay for it.
 MISERABLE CBI
FORCED TO ANNOUNCE
BUOYANT UK MANUFACTURING
Yesterday the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) released its latest ‘Industrial Trends Survey’. It showed that growth in manufacturing output accelerated in the three months to November.
Another exclusive Brexit Facts4EU.Org analysis
CBI REPORT - Brexit Facts4EU.Org Quick Summary:-
  • Total orders - UP: the strongest in 30 years (since August 1988)
  • Export orders - UP: joint highest in 22 years (since June 1995)
  • Output volumes - UP: 40% of businesses said ‘up’, 12% said ‘down’
  • Net Balance - UP: +28% compared to long-run average of +4%
Below: Manufacturing orders, Jan 2016 – Nov 2017
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
The Industrial Trends Survey is the CBI’s longest-running survey which began in 1958 and in their words “continues to be an accurate and timely bellwether for UK manufacturing and the wider economy”.
From late 2015 the CBI had stepped up its pronouncements about the Referendum, to the point where each statement, forecast, or survey result was uniformly ‘doom and gloom’ if the country voted for Brexit.
Below is just one example, from 3 months before the Referendum.
From CBI website, © CBI
WHO DOES THE CBI SPEAK FOR?
Here is what the CBI says about its membership:-
“The CBI speaks on behalf of 190,000 businesses of all sizes and sectors. Together they employ nearly 7 million people, about one third of the private sector-employed workforce.”
The CBI itself has said that only 80% of its membership backed continued EU membership. So if we accept the CBI’s own claim of its members employing “nearly 7 million”, we have to reduce this by 20% to get an approximation of the number of people employed by its members who backed Remain. That gives 5.6 million people.
The latest (Nov 2017) figures from the ONS show 32.06 million people work in the UK.
That means the CBI’s members who backed Remain (the official CBI position) represent just 17.5% of the workforce.
For transparency, none of the Facts4EU.Org team who have owned or still own businesses have ever been members of the CBI.
OBSERVATIONS
In the long run-up to the EU Referendum on June 23rd last year, numerous organisations prophesied a variety of calamities, collapses, and cliff-edges, in brazen attempts to intimidate the British people into voting to Remain.
Whilst it was perfectly reasonable for them to express the opinions of their members, and to conduct and publish research, these organisations were so seized of their Remain case that most overstepped the mark. In other words, they weren’t merely providing information in their area of specialism, they were engaged in a coordinated campaign which was profoundly political in nature.
BADLY LET US ALL DOWN
The most classic of all of course were George Osborne’s Treasury and Mark Carney’s Bank of England. In each case we called on the principals to be fired – or to fall on their swords – after the Referendum.
In Osborne’s case he was fired by Theresa May, but the senior civil servants in the Treasury were not. We still call for them to be fired too.
Right: Former Chancellor, now newspaperman, George Osborne
 
 
In Mark Carney’s case he remains in place as Governor of the bank of England and in our opinion continues to do continual damage. He seems inherently unable to admit that he was wrong.
Left: Mark Carney, still Bank of England Governor
Mr Carney even lowered interest rates in an emergency move immediately after the vote – something which proved to be entirely unnecessary and which has only just been reversed. His speeches and announcements are all deeply flawed and in our opinion damage the economic interests of the UK.
THE CBI SHOULD BE BACKING BRITISH BUSINESS
However the CBI were major players too. As a ‘private sector’ organisation we can’t really call for Carolyn Fairbairn to be fired, as she is paid for mainly by the subscriptions of the CBI’s members. However the CBI does receive a small amount of EU funding so perhaps we should still feel able to say that we feel she is acting against the best interests of her country in all her pessimistic statements. She is another who can’t bear the thought that the economy is proving her wrong on Brexit with every day that passes. Perhaps she will soon wish to retire to the chateau hotel in France that she founded with her husband some years ago.
80% of the CBI’s corporate members backed Remain. These are some of the largest businesses in the UK, operating globally and employing large numbers of migrant workers.
Interestingly, only 47% of the membership of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) backed Remain.
See below for an article by Rt Hon John Redwood MP, giving his thoughts on the CBI.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: CBI | FSB ]     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual. ]        07.25am, 22 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 23 Nov 2017, 12.48pm
Message: I believe it is fair to say the general public has little interest in these so-called, self-important, highly biased (paid for) experts! There is now sufficient evidence to suggest these organisations, such as the CBI, are extremely delusive and are using insidious sophistry to detract from their deceitful announcements? The moment one of these canted organisations announces something negative, we roll our eyes with contempt! Their blatant Anti-Brexit hostility, has awoken an interest in the general public that is much more far-reaching than any other previous political mendacious actions? Based on the hundreds of thousands of comments from many different blogs/forums, from either end of the mass media spectrum, it is clear the UK public is taking a greater interest in how this country is run, and more importantly, who is running it and who is pulling their strings?
 THE CBI GIVES BAD ADVICE
AGAIN ON THE EU
By the Rt Hon Dr John Redwood MP
Reprinted by kind permission
Intro by Brexit Facts4EU.Org
Above we reported on the continued excellent progress of British manufacturing, defying all the doom and gloom merchants including the authors of the 'Industrial Trends' report themselves.
A week ago the CBI led a delegation of business organisations - including from the EU27 - into 10 Downing Street to see Mrs May. This was another blatant attempt to influence the government away from Brexit.
One of several MPs who is not afraid to speak out about this kind of nonsense is the prominent Brexiteer and former Minister for the Single Market under Lady Thatcher, the Rt Hon John Redwood MP.
Dr Redwood is one of those whom we have long argued should be back in Cabinet, along with the likes of the Rt Hon Owen Paterson MP, Rt Hon Theresa Villiers MP and others. We feel their experience would be invaluable at this time. We also champion newer members such as Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, who have much to offer.
Below we reprint by kind permission a short article by John Redwood, which he wrote last week about the CBI's visit to Downing Street.
Article by Rt Hon John Redwood MP
"The CBI gives bad advice again on the EU"
                                       © John Redwood MP
I see the CBI is going to Downing Street to urge delay in leaving the EU and urge that we keep as many of the features of our membership as possible.
We should remember how they lobbied and lobbied to get the UK into the European Exchange Rate Mechanism which gave us boom and bust, and a large recession, which did considerable damage to their member companies.
They then thought the Euro a good idea and claimed we would lose out by not joining it, especially in the City. Instead the City grew and flourished outside the Euro.
Now they want to prolong the period of uncertainty by demanding a Transitional period, and delay making our own trade agreements. Above all they seem to want to cripple the UK economy for longer with large transfers of money to the rest of the EU, with the consequent big drag on our balance of payments.
They could be helpful to their member firms if instead they concentrated on lobbying the EU not to impose any new barriers on their trade with us when we leave. It’s the EU which pretends to want new barriers, not the UK.
OBSERVATIONS
Pithily put by Dr Redwood, we think.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: John Redwood ]      Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual. ]        07.30am, 22 Nov 2017
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 FROM A PLANET
FAR, FAR AWAY...
The latest thoughts of Michel Barnier
A Facts4EU.Org Public Service
Yesterday, the EU Commission's Chief Negotiator gave another extraordinary speech about Brexit. The EU Commission released it in an almost unreadable format. We have improved the readability and are reproducing it in full below.
Speech by Michel Barnier at the Centre for European Reform on
'The Future of the EU'
Brussels, 20 November 2017
                                       © YouTube/CER
Good morning ladies and gentlemen,
It feels a bit unusual to speak about Brexit here. Because this is a conference on the future of the EU. And Brexit is about disentangling the UK from the EU, and settling the past.
But Brexit could prove to be a turning point in the European project. For future historians, the year 2016 – with the UK referendum, the change of power in Washington, geopolitical tensions, terrorist attacks, and the rise of populist parties – will perhaps be seen as a time of awakening.
2016 could become the moment when the EU realised that it had to stand up for itself. And that nobody would do for us what we don't do for ourselves.
In 2012, the UK Prime Minister published a table to show his strong support of the Single Market and incidentally his support for the Commissioner in charge of the Single Market.
It shows that, in 2050, there will be no European countries left in the G8. But by remaining together, the 27 will stay, in the long term, in the top 5.
We need to continue speaking with one voice in the world. Even though we speak many different languages, as the novelist Fernando Pessoa said. Otherwise we will not sit at the table where decisions are made.
And we also need to act together to build a stronger Europe.
  • The Eurozone needs a more complete Banking Union and a fiscal capacity with a finance minister. The EU needs a more integrated Capital Markets Union. Such increased risk sharing needs common rules and common enforcement.
  • The EU needs a stronger capacity to prevent and tackle internal and external threats – with stronger cooperation in fighting terrorism, but also with respect for fundamental rights.
  • The EU needs a truly common foreign policy and European defence.
  • The EU needs to lead on global challenges, from climate change to openness in trade based on its social market economy. And it needs to continue leading in global financial regulation, to make finance work for the real economy.
  • And we need more solidarity in our Union – with a humane and efficient migration policy, and a strong pillar of social rights, as agreed last Friday in Gothenburg.
This stronger European Union will want to have a close relationship with the UK. We have a shared history – it started long before the last 44 years. That is why the “no deal” is not our scenario. Even though we will be ready for it.
I regret that this no deal option comes up so often in the UK public debate. Only those who ignore, or want to ignore, the current benefits of European Union membership can say that no deal would be a positive result.
Ladies and gentlemen,
There are three keys to building a strong partnership with the UK.
First, we need to agree on the terms for the UK's orderly withdrawal. The 27 Member States and the European Parliament have been always very clear on what this means.
And we have been consistent:
  • on citizens' rights;
  • on settling the accounts accurately; we owe this to taxpayers as well as to all those benefiting from EU-funded projects, in the UK and the EU;
  • on Ireland.
Let me say a few words on Ireland specifically. We need to preserve stability and dialogue on the island of Ireland. We need to avoid a hard border. I know that this point is politically sensitive in the UK. It is not less sensitive in Ireland.
Some in the UK say that specific rules for Northern Ireland would “endanger the integrity of the UK single market”. But Northern Ireland already has specific rules in many areas that are different to the rest of the UK.
Think of the “all-Island” electricity market, or of the specific regulations for plant health for the whole island of Ireland. Think of rules that prevent and handle animal disease, which I know well as a former Minister for Agriculture.
There are over one hundred areas of cross-border cooperation on the island of Ireland. Such cooperation depends in many cases on the application of common rules and common regulatory space.
We have nearly finished our common reading of the Good Friday Agreement. We have agreed on the principles for the Common Travel Area. The UK and the EU have recognised that Ireland poses specific challenges. And that the unique circumstances there require a specific solution.
On the EU side, we must preserve the integrity of the Single Market and the Customs Union at 27. The rules for this are clear. The UK said it would continue to apply some EU rules on its territory. But not all rules.
What is therefore unclear is what rules will apply in Northern Ireland after Brexit. And what the UK is willing to commit to, in order to avoid a hard border. I expect the UK, as co-guarantor of the Good Friday Agreement, to come forward with proposals.
The island of Ireland is now faced with many challenges. Those who wanted Brexit must offer solutions.
* * *
The second key is the integrity of the Single Market.
Public debate on what leaving the EU means needs to be intensified. Everywhere. Not only in the UK.
There are two contradicting sound bites from ardent advocates of Brexit:
  • The UK will finally "set itself free" from EU regulations and bureaucracy, some claim.
  • Others claim that – after Brexit – it will still be possible to participate in parts of the Single Market. Simply because we have been together for more than four decades, with the same rules, and we can continue to trust each other.
None of these views seems to offer a sound basis for going forward.
The same people who argue for setting the UK free also argue that the UK should remain in some EU agencies. But freedom implies responsibility for building new UK administrative capacity.
On our side, the 27 will continue to deepen the work of those agencies, together. They will share the costs for running those agencies. Our businesses will benefit from their expertise. All of their work is firmly based on the EU Treaties which the UK decided to leave.
Those who claim that the UK should “cherry-pick” parts of the Single Market must stop this contradiction. The Single Market is a package, with four indivisible freedoms, common rules, institutions and enforcement structures. The UK knows these rules like the back of its hand. It has contributed to defining them over the last 44 years. With a certain degree of influence…
We took note of the UK decision to end free movement of people. This means that the UK will lose the benefits of the Single Market. This is a legal reality.
The EU does not want to punish, once again. It simply draws the logical consequence of the UK's decision to take back control.
On financial services, UK voices suggest that Brexit does not mean Brexit - Brexit means Brexit, everywhere.
They say there would be no changes in market access for UK-established firms. They say joint UK-EU Rules would be decided in a new "symmetrical process" between the EU and the UK, and outside of the jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.
This would contradict the April European Council guidelines, which stress the autonomy of EU decision-making, the integrity of our legal order and of the Single Market.
The legal consequence of Brexit is that UK financial service providers lose their EU passport. This passport allows them to offer their services to a market of 500 million consumers and 22 million businesses.
But the EU will have the possibility to judge some UK rules as equivalent, based on a proportional and risk-based approach. And in those areas where EU legislation foresees equivalence.
The global financial crisis was not so long ago.
It destroyed value and millions of jobs. It was the cause of social suffering, including in the UK. Let's not have a short memory! We will not compromise on financial stability – we will never compromise on financial stability – in the EU and in the Eurozone.
Globally, we will continue our regulatory cooperation in the G20, in the Financial Stability Board, and perhaps even through bilateral regulatory dialogues, like we have with the United States. We will remain committed to convergence of global rules. And avoid fragmentation of financial markets.
Once again, the integrity of the Single Market is not negotiable.
The Single Market is one of our main public goods. It is the main reason why countries around the world – such as China, Japan, and the US – look to us as a strong partner.
* * *
Ladies and gentlemen,
The UK will, of course, have access to the Single Market. But this is different from being part of the Single Market. And a good deal on our future relationship should facilitate this access as much as possible. And avoid a situation where trade would happen under the WTO rules for goods and services.
To achieve this, there is a third key: we need to ensure a level playing field between us. This will not be easy. For the first time ever in trade talks, the challenge will be to limit divergence of rules rather than maximise convergence.
There will be no ambitious partnership without common ground in fair competition, state aid, tax dumping, food safety, social and environmental standards. It is not only about rules or laws. It is about societal choices – for health, food standards, our environment and financial stability.
The UK has chosen to leave the EU. Does it want to stay close to the European model or does it want to gradually move away from it?
The UK's reply to this question will be important and even decisive because it will shape the discussion on our future partnership and shape also the conditions for ratification of that partnership in many national parliaments and obviously in the European Parliament. I do not say this to create problems but to avoid problems.
Ladies and gentlemen,
If we manage to negotiate an orderly withdrawal, fully respect the integrity of the Single Market, and establish a level playing field, there is every reason for our future partnership to be ambitious.
This is our preferred option. This is why we have started internal preparations with Member States. To be ready to talk about the future, as soon as we will have agreed on how to settle the past.
The EU will of course be ready to offer its most ambitious FTA approach.
And the future partnership should not be limited to trade. It should be based on our common values. We need to work together to protect the security of our citizens, to combat crime and terrorism, in Europe and globally and logically we will need to cooperate on foreign and defence challenges.
But in none of these fields, the EU will wait for the UK. We must continue to advance. We are negotiating new free trade agreements in addition to the ones we already have with 60 countries.
We will continue to develop our internal market and to make it fit for digitalisation; we will step up our investment in research and innovation; we will continue to use the strength of this internal market to shape globalisation.
We will continue to show solidarity to refugees, while better protecting our external borders and tackling root causes of migration, notably by continuing our development policy, in particular with Africa, where the EU and the UK will keep a mutual interest.
And we are developing our defence cooperation, with unprecedented steps taken to set up a European Defence Fund and, last week, to finally launch the Permanent Structured Cooperation on which I worked closely with Chris Patten at the time – a very different time.
Against the backdrop of global turmoil in an interconnected world, Europe is today more necessary than ever. The future of Europe is more important than Brexit. But in all these fields, the EU is willing to cooperate with the UK. And it will be in the UK's interest to have a strong EU as a close partner.
Thank you for your attention.
OBSERVATIONS
There is SO much we could say in response to this. However Barney is now clearly so deluded and on a different planet that anything we say might now be deemed to be abuse of someone not in full control of their faculties.
To be frank, no-one really needs any analysis of this anyway. It's plain for all to see, n'est-ce pas?
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 Commission ]      Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual. ]        10.30am, 21 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 23 Nov 2017, 00.44am
Message: A spectacular headline from Facts4eu, as it does reflect the speech given by unelected Mr Michel Barnier is, not on this planet. Mr Barnier should understand the UK made our own sovereign and legal decision. We do NOT require permission from 27 foreign governments, The European parliament, or the unelected commission itself, in order we exit the European political union. Mr Barnier states, "this stronger European Union will want to have a close relationship with the UK". The REAL question Mr Barnier should ask himself is, HOW MUCH ARE THE EU27 PREPARED TO PAY FOR ACCESS TO LUCRATIVE UK MARKETS? Whether or not the UK wish to have a close relationship with a European Union that continuously threaten and makes unaccountable financial demands upon the UK, is another question altogether? I do not presently see 'good neighbourliness' from the EU towards the UK as we prepare for exit. We are however led to understand the EU27 instruct Mr Barnier, which means they are party to the persistent threats towards us. Do the EU27 actually realise that by making outrageous financial demands and insulting the UK, we may simply walk away from discussions? We will NOT be bullied, and the EU27 should in my opinion instruct Mr Barnier accordingly? I would suggest a different approach from the EU27 - IF YOU WISH CONTINUED AND MUTUAL FRIENDSHIP WITH THE UK, PROVE IT? Of course, the EU27 need to urgently decide how they intend funding themselves once they loose the massive British contribution, presently the second highest? We should not be funding foreign competitors. There's a big wide world outside the European Union, and trading on WTO terms with the EU now looks ever more attractive. We don't need to hang around whilst the EU27 make up their minds at snails pace, for if they wanted to move quickly, they would?
Name: Ashley, Great Britain      Date/Time: 21 Nov 2017, 7.48pm
Message: how can this man stand there and talk with all authority. most of what he said was hollow nothingness. but we can take from it some insider EU thoughts. There will be an EU army. they feel they have given the UK so much. they still want lots of our money. when the EU says that it has supported us financially,they are actually talking about some of our money that they have given back to us. we cant spend this money as we would like to benefit the uk. instead they give it to areas and institutions that only support the EU and its agenda here in the UK. propaganda to aid the EU and for the indoctrination of the youth. this is done with our money,to benefit the elitist machine. the rest of our money we never see again,and never have done. the money that could have helped our services and our country is exported to aid the EU under the banner of unity. how we have managed for 40 years to keep this up is beyond me! just imagen how this country would look right now if all that money never left these shores! The single market has been a dead duck for years. you could say this is the only benefit we have received from our membership. it stifles medium and small companies with excessive burdens once again to aid the EU. we should not be paying for single market access! we should be aiming to trade on our terms or at the least under wto terms. we will do far better outside the single market. If only our government could grow a pair,they would see that we have everything going for us.our position is so strong and the government must not back down or offer money again for nothing! I am immensely optimistic for our future outside the EU. in the coming years everyone will see just how good it is to get out. overall we will not fail. the British people do not fail! I for one cannot wait! Roll on 29/03/19.
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 21 Nov 2017, 1.29pm
Message: Michel Barnier: "We took note of the UK decision to end free movement of people. This means that the UK will lose the benefits of the Single Market" Can someone please eruditely explain to me in simple English...what are the benefits he is talking about? I am certainly open-minded and willing to listen to this arguments? But can someone please first explain how an annual deficit with the EU of circa £96 Billion, and an annual club membership of circa net £9 Billion is "Beneficial to the general UK citizens?" I don't see any improvement in our Roads; NHS; Schools; Pensions; Migration Security; Old people's healthcare, etc.. indeed it has become absolutely appalling over the past 30 years!
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 21 Nov 2017, 1.11pm
Message: The EU reminds me of the old adage "When you're up to your neck in alligators, it's easy to forget that the initial objective was to drain the swamp" They just don't get it...the EU is in a complete mess and its leaders continue to put ever more lipstick on a Pig! On another track: It seems to all intents and purposes the Conservatives leaders have completely lost the plot? This ludicrous Brexit negotiations debacle continues to show how woefully weak our incumbent leadership are! …and to the wider world? How long must the UK populace endure such a disregard for their wishes and repeated inability to achieve the desired outcome! Conclusion. We need a new and revitalised Conservative party, which has a backbone and in line with the UK’s majority thinking! Someone, please stand up and be counted!
Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 21 Nov 2017, 11.47am
Message: What planet is Barnier on? He wants the UK Government to pay him billions of Euros to leave the EU. So that the EU can restrict future trade deals the UK might get, if they are uncompetitive with the EU! What is our Government doing entertaining this clown? Contemplating paying 40billion Euros to get a trade deal,which Barnier has said will be the Canadian model. Allowing a foreign justice system the ECJ, to hold sway over an independent sovereign country, the UK. Abide by all the rules and laws of the exiting cartel, the EU. Also not undercutting the EU taxes ie Corporation Tax. Barnier is deluded if he thinks any Government in any country in the world, would think that a deal, let alone an acceptable deal. Let's walk away now plan for WTO, and keep some respect.
Name: Mermaid, UK      Date/Time: 21 Nov 2017, 11.17am
Message: I would like to know why everyone seems to be ignoring EU assets. Over the years we have paid towards their lavish Brussels buildings but Germany argument is, you’re not entitled because EU assets belong to the EU and not to individual member countries. I would argue If member states have no claim to EU assets, what will happen to the EU assets when the EU implodes?
Name: Simon Jones, Wiltshire      Date/Time: 21 Nov 2017, 11.31am
Message: That's an astonishingly incoherent speech. This position appears to be from the EU that we want to cherry pick UK defence capability, cherry pick UK aid, cherry pick City of London financial heft and then want a FTA that will lock in all the obligations of the EU. I do not understand why the UK government does not call this out except that perhaps this is what they want to.
 ‘THE DAY OF THE MIFIDS’
WILL THE CITY OF LONDON
STILL BE ABLE TO TRADE
WITH THE EU AFTER BREXIT?
Passporting, the UK's financial services industry, and ‘MIFID I & II’
A Facts4EU.Org Explainer
Yesterday, the EU Commission's Chief Negotiator gave another extraordinary speech about Brexit, during which he made a claim about the UK's financial services industry. We examine that claim.
“The legal consequence of Brexit is that UK financial service providers lose their EU passport. This passport allows them to offer their services to a market of 500 million consumers and 22 million businesses.”
Right: Michel Barnier, EU Chief Brexit Negotiator
 
Over several years the EU Commission has built up its involvement in regulating the financial services industry at an EU level. Currently the City has to comply with a myriad of EU Directives which relate to something called ‘passporting’.
WHAT IS ‘PASSPORTING’
Put simply, passporting is the name given to a system for enabling a financial organisation to conduct its business in another EU member state. In fact this concept also applies to non-EU countries, but here we focus on the EU.
So, financial passports allow a financial services firm to trade in another country using an approval from the regulator in their home country. In the case of the UK, this is the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and to a lesser extent the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) of the Bank of England.
Passporting works both ways – firms in the EU27 require passports to carry out UK work just as much as UK firms need passports to carry out EU27 work.
WHO BENEFITS?
The latest data we have on the number of passports being used comes from a written answer given to the Treasury Select Committee on 17 Aug last year. The FCA reported the numbers of outgoing passports for UK firms, and the number of incoming passports for EU firms.
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
  • 5,476 UK firms have a passport to do business in another EU country
  • 8,008 EU firms have a passport to do business in the UK
So that’s 46% more EU firms having UK passports,
than UK firms having EU passports.
HOW COMPLICATED IS PASSPORTING?
A number of EU directives enable passporting:
  • Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID)
  • Alternative Investment Fund Managers Directive (AIFMD)
  • Insurance Mediation Directive (IMD)
  • Mortgage Credit Directive (MCD)
  • Payment Services Directive (PSD)
  • UCITS Directive (UCITS)2
  • Electronic Money Directive (EMD)
  • Capital Requirements Directive (CRD)
  • Solvency II Directive (Solvency II)
In short, the EU's 'simplification' of doing business across the EU involves financial firms complying with legislation, directives and procedures running to many thousands of pages in each area.
WHAT ABOUT ‘EQUIVALENCE’ AND MIFID II?
In 2014 the EU introduced the concept of 'equivalence' of regulatory regimes in other countries and new permissions will come into force on 1st Jan 2018, before the UK leaves. The new regulations expand the scope beyond the EU and EEA and are known under the acronyms MiFiD II and MiFiR.
It is important to note that the UK will be fully compliant when it leaves the EU on 29th March 2019. It will have full ‘equivalence’ of its financial regulations, to use the EU’s parlance.
WILL EURO ‘CLEARING’ MOVE TO FRANKFURT OR PARIS?
This was one of the many scare stories from Project Fear before the Referendum, and it has appeared almost weekly in the financial pages of newspapers ever since.
The facts are that the UK took the European Central Bank (ECB) to the European Court of Justice (ECJ) and fought a 4-year legal battle to prevent the EU from insisting that clearing of euro transactions could only take place in a Eurozone country.
Eventually the ECJ found in the UK’s favour, although the judges made sure to suggest the way in which the EU could defeat the UK in the future. In the end it came down to regulatory authority and financial muscle – neither of which the ECB had at the time of the judgement in March 2015.
The ECB does not have the competence necessary to impose such a requirement on central counterparties involved in the clearing of securities
General Court of the European Court of Justice, Mar 2015
So, London’s status as the largest centre for euro clearing was under threat many years before the EU Referendum.
London handles 75% of Euro interest-rate derivatives and swaps, and the Eurozone actually needs London's financial power.
OBSERVATIONS
Yesterday the Chief Negotiator of the EU indulged in Project Fear. The simple fact is that the EU's finances would simply cease functioning without the City of London. This is not a facility they can easily recreate in Frankfurt or Paris - it will take a decade or more and even then it won't have the muscle the EU needs with all the problems stacking up for its troubled single currency the Euro. Whether Barney likes it or not, he's uttering empty threats and he knows it.
Can the EU make life as difficult as possible for the UK's financial sector? Oh yes, definitely. However it simply requires a Prime Minister with the right stuff, and their bluff can be called.
The UK is known worldwide for its excellence in international financial operations. The sheer power of the available infrastructure and funds all in one place, under a legal system which the world trusts, will make its position hard to shift after Brexit.
There are a great many issues over financial services to negotiate in the lead up to Brexit. However with over two centuries as the most innovative financial market in the World, we fully expect the City will find ways to carry on as usual, using its customary ingenuity.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 Commission | Financial Conduct Authority | Prudential Regulation Authority | Norton Rose Fulbright | Financial Services Negotiation Forum | Bank for International Settlements | Treasury Select Committee
     Journalists and politicians can contact us for the full list of links, as usual. ]
       07.55am, 21 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 23 Nov 2017, 04.31am
Message: In my opinion, the above article explaining 'passporting' exposes 'Project Fear' really well. This helps the layman [like me] better understand this subject in easy to understand terms and charts. Thank you. When did we last hear doom and gloom merchants explain themselves in this manner? It's more probable they simply don't know the facts and were, and still are, reacting to 'force-fed' disinformation by some UK remain MPs and peers, perhaps? I never thought during my lifetime I would ever witness [some] anti-UK, pro-EU, MPs and peers selling out my country. To think we elect our MPs to serve OUR country, yet some bat for the other side. We do not elect MPs for them to be told by the EU they cannot do something because EU laws forbid it, even when it may benefit the UK populous. Think about that for a moment? When prospective MPs come to your door 'pleading' for you to lend them your vote, WHO are you lending your vote to - our sovereign Parliament or the EU quasi-dictatorship?
 WHO SHOULD HAMMOND
GIVE THE BUDGET BILLIONS TO?
US? OR THEM?
               
Tomorrow the Chancellor will deliver his Budget 2017.
As the country contemplates how its fortunes should be managed, collected, and distributed, ‘Remainer Phil’ will have been making decisions based on his view of the ongoing relations and payment commitments from the UK to the EU. It is clear that the Chancellor’s view and the view of the majority of the country are at odds.
Nevertheless, tomorrow’s budget will need to be seen in the context of a Cabinet which appears to be on the verge of yet more massive financial concessions to the EU.
‘THE SURRENDER CABINET’
The Brexit cabinet sub-committee meeting (the so-called ‘war cabinet’) met last night and it is being reported by all mainstream media overnight that they agreed to double the amount being thrown at the EU, from £20bn to £40bn.
The members of the sub-committee agreed what to include, rather than calculating an exact figure, but it is understood that the new inclusions will double Mrs May’s original offer to the EU of the £20bn contained in her Florence speech.
Last night Downing Street gave the usual response and played down the new agreement which has been reached. “It remains our position that nothing’s agreed until everything’s agreed in negotiations with the EU,” they said. “As the prime minister said this morning, the UK and the EU should step forward together.” It has been stressed that any payment will be conditional on securing an acceptable transition deal and a good free trade agreement.
THE IMPORTANCE OF BREXIT
Our chart below shows how Brexit was by far the number one issue for voters at the 2017 General Election.
Chart by Facts4EU.Org 2017
THE MONEY MOUNTS UP
It should be noted that the original £20bn alledgedly offered (never denied) by Mrs May was ‘extra’ money over and above some £30bn which the UK will have paid from the date of the Referendum decision to the notional exit day of 29 March 2019.
If Mrs May and her colleagues plan to increase the ‘offer’ to Brussels, the total payments from the UK to the EU will total over £70bn.
Prominent Brexiteers were reacting all day yesterday,
in advance of and in reaction to the meeting’s conclusions.
© John Redwood / Twitter
Jacob Rees-Mogg MP:
“If we say that we are not continuing to contribute without a deal to the last 21 months of the multi-annual financial framework then the EU has a huge hole in its budget – it has no legal ability to borrow and it is effectively insolvent for that period.”
“So I would say to people who say we’re not going to get on to the second stage, well that’s fine, but then you haven’t got any money for 21 months. Where are you going to get it from?”
Rt Hon Robert Halfon MP:
“If we start saying that we're going to give £40billion to the EU, I think the public will go bananas, absolutely spare.”
“I voted Remain ... but we voted to leave, the public want to leave, and I cannot believe that the public would accept such a huge amount when we need money for our schools, our hospitals, our housing, and many other things.”
Rt Hon Iain Duncan Smith MP:
“We should not be offering any more money at this stage. Negotiation is about strength and courage and we have to make sure we don't give in every time they ask for more.”
“This week the Chancellor will stand up and tell us we need to get the deficit down and can't make any spending commitments, while on the other hand saying we are going to give the EU more money. Voters will ask, why is the EU more important than them?”
Nigel Evans MP:
“We cannot play Santa for Juncker, and Scrooge for public services. The public will not accept it and they are right not to.”
Mrs May will now discuss the new financial offer with EU Council President Donald Tusk on Friday.
OBSERVATIONS
Our view is simple. If Mrs May carries on down this path, throwing any more at the EU than she has already given them, she loses us forever.
The government’s Brexit negotiating strategy has already been, in our opinion, pitiful. For month after month we held back, having no wish to undermine the government in what were clearly going to be difficult negotiations. We made suggestions and comments… and then gradually our suggestions had to become more forceful.
Soon it became clear to us that the British government side (politicians and civil servants) were clueless when it came to even the most basic fundamentals of negotiating with the shower that is the EU. It is as if they know nothing at all about the EU and the way it works, despite the UK having been a member for 44 years.
We are now at the stage where there is almost nothing we can commend in the government’s negotiating approach to the EU. And it does pain us to say that.
THERE IS HOPE
The UK’s best hope – and the one which we have always believed to be the most likely – is that the EU will cut off its nose to spite its face. We continue to believe that the EU elites will never negotiate in anything like a normal international way.
To paraphrase that haunting song Hotel California again, “Their minds are 'Tiffany' twisted”. They are blinded by the money, the power and the sparkle, and oblivious to their own pasty mediocrity.
We have absolutely no confidence that the EU will ever agree a sensible exit deal, nor a transition deal, nor a future free trade arrangement. It is not how they are programmed. You only have to look at the mess they make of every single international trade deal and how these drag on for years before either being approved or just fading to dust. (The biggest failed trade deal in the world, TTIP with the USA, is never even mentioned in the corridors of Brussels any more.)
If the EU run true to form in this way, and we’re basing our view on decades of evidence, then the sheer negotiating incompetence of the UK government will matter a great deal less than many Brexit commentators are currently fearing.
If Mrs May offers the EU everything, and they still ask for more, surely even the traitors on the Labour, LibDem and SNP benches will not be able to vote against leaving anyway, on the normal WTO terms used by countries outside the EU. And the UK will never have to give the EU an extra penny.
In this no-deal scenario there will be some bumps along the way to an eventual post-Brexit golden future, but a golden future it will still be. We’d have it tomorrow if we could.
Oh, and if the British government ever want to throw vast amounts of money at anyone, they could do a lot better than us. A quick million and we’d give several pieces of specific advice that would save billions. And then Facts4EU.Org’s future would be secured.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: All media | Twitter | Lord Ashcroft Polls ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       06.55am, 21 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 23 Nov 2017, 06.09am
Message: WOW. Common sense facts and brilliant observations as usual. Can you imagine the picture now, remainers going nuts because Mrs May & Co intend giving away British taxpayers money to the EU in the 10's of £billions, over and above our legal commitment? The Rt Hon Dr John Redwood MP rightly points out, "There is no legal basis for payments to the EU other than our contributions up to the date of leaving...". One might believe Sir Keir Starmer MP, Shadow Spokesperson for Exiting the EU, given his background, would KNOW there is no legal basis to throw £billions at the EU. Yet how often do we hear Sir Starmer and others state this FACT in The House of Commons? We hear only from politicians in favour of Brexit stating the obvious. IF we have these extra £billions, I'm certain all of us would be happy and could make a list of how WE wish to spend OUR money in OUR country? And don't forget there's also the matter of our massive Foreign Aid Dudget which NEEDS redefining. With all this said, we MUST ask ONE important question. As there is no legal basis as set out, then Mrs May PM should not in theory be able to give away our £billions to a foreign power and its 27 governments? Can't have it both ways. I urge Mrs May to stand tall for our country and tell the already bloated EU they will NOT receive additional amounts over and above our legal requirement, and there would be nothing they could do about it? Only then will I respect Mrs May.
Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 23 Nov 2017, 9.15pm
Message: Already the EU has rejected the proposed 40billion Euro from the UK Government, to start trade talks. The time is fast approaching when the UK should stand strong and start planning in earnest for no deal. You can't negotiate with terrorists or blackmailers fact, we in the UK are being blackmailed by the EU. They misguidedly believe the UK Government will bottle these negotiations because they are too difficult and stay in the EU "family". Wrong answer. If we don't get an agreement we go elsewhere for our goods. The Commonwealth countries are waiting for our custom with open arms. No Deal means we save 40billion and leave,the German, French, Dutch, Irish, and Italian economies to take a another 200,000 manufacturing jobs on the dole added to the bill will be easy to sell in next April's German election rerun. Even Remainers are beginning to see the EU for what it is a protectionist racket. Let's just walk and leave with dignity, an independent free sovereign country again!
Name: Carole, UK      Date/Time: 21 Nov 2017, 10.02am
Message: I now feel decidedly dirty and used. This is not what I voted for in the EU referendum.
MORE IS COMING
Pleaes check back later.
Best wishes, the Brexit Facts4EU.Org Team, 21 Nov 2017, 06.55am
 THE 'JUNCKER YOUTH'
LIVE - COUNCIL SESSION
ON EU'S YOUTH PROGRAMME
EU DISCUSSES ITS YOUTH INDOCTRINATION AND BRAINWASHING PROGRAMME
Please watch below. This is a public service provided by Facts4EU.Org, because the BBC, Sky, and ITV never report on what the EU actually does.
© EU Council
OBSERVATIONS
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       09.55am, 20 Nov 2017
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Name: Rose, UK      Date/Time: 21 Nov 2017, 1.42pm
Message: Not just Hitler Youth but the Young Pioneers of Stasiland and the Red Guards of China.
Name: R Ellison, UK      Date/Time: 20 Nov 2017, 8.21pm
Message: Don't they know it's been tried before.... and failed? Hitler Youth was one such group of brainwashed youngsters. How can anyone give a presentation openly, not seeing what is so wrong and heinous? Sheep come to mind. Baaa, Blaa, Blaa!!! Tusk and Juncker are behind Erasmus. No surprises there.
 IST MUTTI
  KAPUTTI?
 
GERMANY IN CHAOS, CURRENTLY UNGOVERNABLE
Weeks of coalition talks collapse in midnight meltdown
Angela Merkel unable to form government, as junior partners walk out
Head of FDP party, Christian Lindner, after walking out                                       © ARD
Late last night one of the parties with which Angela Merkel was hoping to form a coalition government, the Free Democrats, walked out of talks after the second deadline had passed.
The first deadline came and went on Thursday last week. The second and final deadline was last night. Pulling his party out of the talks just before midnight, the 38-year-old new liberal FDP leader Christian Lindner said: “It is better not to rule than to rule wrongly.”
This now leaves only the Greens in the talks with Frau Merkel’s CDU and its sister party the Bavarian CSU. The problem for Mrs Merkel - known as 'Mutti' ('Mummy') by many Germans - is that the maths now doesn’t work. These three parties only managed to secure 41.9% of the vote in the General Election in September. They needed the 10.7% achieved by the FDP to get over the 50% mark and to have a working majority coalition government.
Chart by Facts4EU.Org 2017
‘REFUGEES’ BROUGHT DOWN THE GERMAN GOVERNMENT
Some 2 million migrants have entered Germany since 2015. The German public’s attitudes have changed over the past two years. One of the many current debates going on in Germany at present is over the question of whether migrants should be allowed to bring in all members of their families.
The Greens are essentially 100% in favour of all proposals connected to the rights of migrants, whereas the FDP adopts a harder line.
“We will insist on the right of refugees with subsidiary protections to be reunited with their families in Germany. That’s an issue of trust for us here.”
- Claudia Roth, Greens
GERMAN MEDIA BIAS
Just as in the UK, many independent commentators are remarking on the fact that many German politicians and journalists remain in a state of disconnect with the wider populace. This helps to explain how the Alternativ fur Deutschland party swept to an incredible third place in the elections in September, with 12.6% of the vote.
Below is an example of this. It’s typical and it’s relevant, because it’s an interview with the Chairman of the FDP who last night walked out of the talks with Angela Merkel’s CDU.
Head of FDP party, Christian Lindner                                    © FDP
In an interview with ‘Bild’ in September, the head of the FDP Christian Lindner was uncompromising on migrants:
Q: “What happens to the hundreds of thousands of refugees who are already in Germany?”
A: “We promote and support refugees. But refugee status can not automatically become a permanent residence status. People have to return to their old homeland as soon as the situation permits.”
Q: “Are you serious? All?”
A: “That's international humanitarian law. I suggest that we adhere strictly to what has been proven over decades. When peace prevails, refugees must return if they do not meet the criteria of a new immigration law that gives them a new residence status. There is no human right to choose one's location in the world itself.”
Q: “What happens to the hundreds of thousands of refugees who are already in Germany?”
A: “You get support, you get language courses and access to the job market, the children go to school. But in the end, if it is safe again in Syria, refugee protection in Germany must end. Then you should be able to apply for a legal permanent residence. But if you do not meet our criteria, you have to go.”
Q: “Even after five to ten years? That would also affect children born here ...”
A: “Yes, because being born here isn’t connected with having German citizenship”
Q: “Mr. Lindner, where does your hardness come from?”
A: “That isn’t hardness, it’s the rule of law and realism.”
ALL THE REASONS WHY THE TALKS HAVE COLLAPSED
Naturally there are several reasons why the German coalition talks collapsed last night. Here are the four main areas:
  • Asylum, immigration and family reunification
  • Climate ‘protection’ and German power plants
  • EU and German policy towards the eurozone
  • Tax and spend policies
WHAT HAPPENS NEXT?
Angela Merkel will remain as acting Chancellor, albeit significantly weakened. She can decide to try to form a coalition with the Greens (and the CSU) as a minority government but has said she won’t do this. She could approach the SPD (Labour party) but there’s almost no chance they will want to form another coalition with Merkel after they got trounced at the ballot box in September.
President Frank-Walter Steinmeier will need to get involved and may formally appoint Angela Merkel as Chancellor. If Frau Merkel tells him she can’t govern, then he has to dissolve the German parliament and call elections for two months’ time.
Last night Angela Merkel said that she will be seeing the German President today, adding:
“It is a day of deep reflection on how to go forward in Germany. As Chancellor, I will do everything to ensure that this country is well managed in the difficult weeks to come.”
In effect, Germany is currently ungovernable and urgent actions are required today and in the coming days.
OBSERVATIONS
Before commenting on the collapse of Frau Merkel’s coalition government talks, we would make one observation about the interview of Das Bild with the FDP leader in September. Bild is huge in Germany. It falls firmly into what one might call the tabloid camp. And yet its journalist attacked Christian Lindner like he was the devil incarnate.
“Are you serious? ... Even after five to ten years? That would also affect children born here ... Mr Lindner, where does your hardness come from?”
This is aggressive questioning from a cosmopolitan-luvvie-journo who needs to learn that there are different sides to the migrant question in Germany, and elsewhere. And whilst we’re on the subject of biased journalists........
BBC SHOULD GIVE THIS THE FULL CRITICAL TREATMENT
Some elements of the British media – most notably the BBC – seemed to delight in the results of the British General Election in June, telling the rest of the EU that in effect Mrs May was fatally wounded and that the country now has very weak government. Many articles or pieces to camera had the underlying message that Brexit may be withdrawn as a result.
This narrative continues to be pursued by the BBC on a daily basis. As a result the majority of politicians in the EU27 countries and in the EU Commission in Brussels perceive the British government to be weak, divided, and on its last legs.
GERMANY IS UNGOVERNABLE, MERKEL PERMANENTLY WOUNDED
Given that the BBC (and other sections of the British media) has spent months delighting in telling the British people and the rest of the EU that the UK was virtually on its knees politically, we look forward to it handing out similar treatment to Frau Merkel.
2 MONTHS WITHOUT A GOVERNMENT – AND COUNTING
The German elections took place precisely 8 weeks ago. The EU’s largest member state still has no new government – after 8 weeks.
Please stop and think for a moment. Imagine if the UK had been without a new government for two months following a general election, and further imagine that there was no prospect of a solution?
We can all imagine how the BBC would have been over this like flies on jam.
ANGELA MERKEL, GERMANY, AND BREXIT
Facts4EU.Org would not normally comment on the internal politics of another EU country unless it directly related to Brexit. In this case we’re raising it for three reasons.
  1. The British media has been quick to blame the UK government at every occasion for being weak, and yet fails to shine an equivalent light on EU member state governments. We pointed out only a few weeks ago that the Dutch were without a permanent new government for seven months after their elections in March. Now we have the largest economy in the EU, Germany, without an effective government for two months and with no sign of it having one in the foreseeable future.

    Regrettably, the German media followed the lead of the UK media in presenting the British government as a wounded animal, and continue to tell the German people that Brexit came about purely due to internal divisions in the Tory parliamentary party and due to lies by the Leave campaign. We therefore feel justified in presenting some information to you about what is going on in Berlin.
  2. The most difficult issue facing the potential coalition partners in Germany was to agree on immigration. We feel it was important to highlight that large parts of the German establishment are carrying on in complete denial of the catastrophic and hugely expensive errors of the German government in 2015 and after.

    The actions of the Germans with their misguided and naïve immigration policies have had a major impact and costs on the rest of the EU and have even caused other EU member states to have formal legal actions taken against them by the EU Commission in the last two months (Hungary and Poland in particular). The much-vaunted no-borders Schengen zone – a pillar of what the EU considers its biggest achievements to be – continues to lie in tatters as a direct result of German migrant policy.
  3. BREXIT – The most significant event for the EU in decades took place last year when the British people voted to leave. The EU and the UK desperately need to be fully-engaged on finding a deal which allows the UK to exit smoothly and for the business of the UK and the EU27 to continue normally. Instead, we have the de facto dominant leader of the EU with her mind firmly elsewhere. There is almost no mention of Brexit anywhere in the German papers right now. Not surprisingly, Mrs Merkel is fixated on her domestic politics and on staying in power.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: ARD and other German Media | Bild | FDP | Der Bundeswahlleiter ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       07.45am, 20 Nov 2017
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 THE EU’S BABY-MAKER
JUNCKER CLAIMS EU’S
ERASMUS PROJECT
HAS MADE 1.1m BABIES
MASSIVE €30BN PROGRAMME IS ANNOUNCED, TO MAKE MORE
EU Erasmus Programme, © EU Commission
As part of the EU’s ‘Social Summit’ in Gothenberg Sweden on Friday, attended by British Prime Minister Theresa May and the leaders of the other 27 EU member states, massive expansion plans were put forward for the EU’s youth education project, Erasmus+.
Erasmus+ is generally thought to be a programme of exchange for university students. It is in fact much, much more than this, as we shall explain.
WHAT JUNCKER SAID ABOUT GROWING EU-BABIES
At a speech at the EU’s ‘Social Summit’, Commission President said the following:
“We need more young people, more apprentices, more professors, more teachers to be part of this programme, which mobilised until today 9 million of young people.”
“And by the way, it has a libido part. Because out of the Erasmus programme, some estimates say that 1.1 million babies were born. That is the greatest success the European Commission ever had. And I would like to extend this.”
Right: Jean-Claude Juncker in Sweden on Friday
 
FINDING OUT THE COST OF THESE BABIES
Budget to be more than doubled to €30bn, says EU Commission:-
“I would like us to increase the budget for the Erasmus+ programme.”
“No cuts should be accepted when it come to the Erasmus+ programme. I know when we started 30 years ago out of 15 governments 12 were opposed. Now it is their invention. And as it is their invention we have to make sure that the budget we need will be put into place.”
The EU Commission’s statement issued on Friday went even further.
“President Juncker stressed that if we want to double the number of young people participating in Erasmus by 2025, we need to be ready to put €30 billion euro on the table for this in the next financing period.”
So, the budget for the current financial period is £14bn. President Juncker and his colleagues say it must be increased to over £26bn.
We have researched Erasmus+ many times. Despite it having a current budget of £14 billion – and a new budget of £26 billion being called for from 2020 – it is surprisingly difficult to find good information from the EU on the effectiveness of this programme.
When you look at the history of EU budgets for this programme, it is impossible to produce an accurate summary by year. We have various official documents which contradict each other and which make any attempt at producing a graph showing the 30 year history to be meaningless.
However we can show the last 4 years, as this falls under the official 2014-2020 ‘multiannual framework’ the EU uses for working out its budgets. See below.
Chart © Facts4EU.Org 2017
JUDGING ERASMUS ON JUNCKER’S TERMS
Naturally academics and other Remainers tell us how essential this Erasmus+ programme is, but do they have any information to base their opinions on?
As Jean-Claude Juncker chose to focus on the ‘social’ benefits of Erasmus+ on Friday, we thought we would do the same.
Herr Juncker spoke about relationships and making babies, so we looked at :-
  • Erasmus as a dating site
  • Erasmus as a marriage bureau
  • Erasmus as a brainwasher for EU citizenship
The data quoted below comes from an official EU ‘impact assessment’ on Erasmus+ for the EU Commission from last year, 2016.
1. ERASMUS+ AS A DATING SITE
Erasmus graduates are three times more likely to be with a partner from another country, than graduates who attended universities in their own countries.
In the case of British Erasmus graduates, the figure is an astonishing 57%. Yes, over half of British students participating in Erasmus ended up permanently dating someone who isn’t British.
Chart by Facts4EU.Org 2017
2. ERASMUS+ AS A MARRIAGE BUREAU
As for where to meet your partner for life, being an Erasmus+ student is the way to go. 49% of British alumni of the Erasmus project met their life partner on Erasmus. This is almost double the EU average, which is 26%. We are unaware of any marriage or relationship sites which can boast that half of its British members are successful. This is certainly something that Erasmus+ does well.
Chart by Facts4EU.Org 2017
3. ERASMUS AS A BRAINWASHER FOR EU-NESS
88% of British Erasmus alumni feel ‘more European’ as a result of their experience. Former students were asked questions about what Erasmus meant “to feel European, to have Europe-wide perspectives beyond the national horizon, and to have a sense of European citizenship”. With 88% being positive, the UK came top out of all EU countries.
OBSERVATIONS
Since we first researched Erasmus+ in depth we have considered it to be a youth social engineering project. We will now go further.
On Friday we had the President of the EU Commission stating openly that he wanted one of the EU’s programmes to be expanded rapidly, in part because of its success in producing EU babies.
Just stop and think for a moment. He considers the production of 1.1 million EU babies to be one of the greatest achievements of the EU in its current form.
It is also worth remembering that President Juncker has been a very strong advocate of Erasmus+ and has started a new project for young people not in university as well. More on the latter in a moment.
Right: Perhaps those EU babies might look good in one of these?
 
TOTALITARIANISM AND SOCIAL ENGINEERING
There is no easy way to put this, but there are an increasing number of elements of EU policy and activity which resemble those of classic totalitarian regimes. This has become even more obvious since the Referendum. Being British and with European history being of immediate relevance, it is only natural that the two examples of totalitarian regimes which come to mind are those of the Third Reich and the Soviet Union.
In each of these cases, indoctrination of the young was a key plank in the development and inforcement of these totalitarian regimes’ societal structures. And in each of these cases the totalitarian regimes cost the United Kingdom dearly, in its defence of peace and democracy in Europe.
We have previously produced major research on Erasmus+ and on the new addition to the EU’s indoctrination armoury, the ‘European Solidarity Corps’, or ‘the Juncker Youth’ as we call it.
The government - and even most pro-Brexit organisations - are talking about continuing with programmes like Erasmus+ after Brexit, and say they think it reasonable to pay for continued access.
We believe it is vital that someone tells the Prime Minister that neither of these projects are some kind of harmless exchange programmes for young people. Instead they are part of a homogenisation of European youth and an indoctrination into EU citizenship and sets of values which have never been agreed by the British people.
Below: Theresa May (obscured) sitting in second row with the seat beside her vacant,
listening to Jean-Claude Juncker's speech about EU babies
© EU Commission
Needless to say, our articles are based on solid research of official documents and spreadsheets. We would prefer not to describe the EU as descending steadily into a full-blown totalitarian state, but we feel we must now do so. And if we do this - based on substantial research and analysis - we would like to suggest that any Remainers reading this might want to pause for a moment before hurling some insult or other.
We do not believe that ‘values’ are something unelected EU elites should be imposing on our young people.
We do not believe that educational curricula are the business of the EU.
We do not believe that the creation of a master race from EU babies is a good idea.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 Commission | Directorate General for Education and Culture ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       06.55am, 19 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 19 Nov 2017, 6.10pm
Message: EVERY so-called EU project whether or not behind closed doors, is just another brainwashing effort by the unelected EU commission and its elected puppet leaders from nation states, to IMPOSE ever closer union upon peoples who never elected faceless wonders, and to create such schemes by whatever method to that end, regardless. In laughable terms, Mr Juncker is setting himself up to be the 'father' of EU social engineering? (What an awful thought). He infers we no longer have French babies, German babies, and so on, we only make 'EU babies'. This is far too serious to ignore and not a laughing matter. Do younger generations have pride in OUR country and culture? Do they believe OUR long history [good and not so good] makes us whom we are today? Do they believe the heritage OUR forebears fought and died for was worth our heavy losses? The UK went to the aid of continental Europe, yet THEY now threaten us because WE chose to democratically end political union with them (as opposed to remaining friendly). We helped liberate their freedoms, so one may think they should be just a tad grateful? Given the often questionable schemes the EU commission come up with, consider this: Mr Junker is creating an EU military at speed. You need people for that, so more 'EU babies' begins to have another purpose? The 'EU babies' (or 'Juncker generations') should consider WHY there is any need for Mr Junker to develop an 'attack force' when those countries already enjoy voluntary membership under the NATO umbrella. The Juncker army is simply another waste of taxpayers money. Most disturbing is that many EU member countries DO NOT pay their fair share in this regard - THE UK DOES (Please see a previous Facts4eu article for this concise information). It is clear to see that generation Juncker WILL pick up the tab of the next generation if he's allowed to continue. I would suggest Mr Juncker has no place attempting to redefine the national status of our young? But hey, the EU redefined illegal migrants as, 'irregular migrants'! They have lost the concept of what illegal means - unless it suits their own purpose, as with everything?
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 19 Nov 2017, 1.04pm
Message: The Erasmus+ scheme is simply a mendacious mechanism to steal the minds, hearts, and souls of our young adults. They, in turn, become the EU's long-term deceptive weapon for future young people mind control! East Germany, Romania, Cambodia, old communist block, China, Russia, etc, have long used such insidious programmes to gain control over young naive minds. Just another name for a very Merkel-communist-esque sophistry? BUT, history has proven, in the long run, it is doomed to failure!
 EU THREAT LEVEL AGAINST UK INCREASES
RHETORIC FROM EU AND IRELAND
BECOMES MORE AGGRESSIVE
British Prime Minister was lectured again by the unelected EU President Tusk
British Prime Minister Theresa May flew to Gothenberg yesterday for yet another EU Summit. This one was about ‘social rights’ but the EU took the opportunity once again to increase the threat level against the UK.
Watch the statement of the EU Council President, Donald Tusk:-
© EU Council
And here is the transcript:-
“In October, the EU27 started internal preparations on the second phase of negotiations, namely transition and the future relationship. And we will be ready to move-on to the second phase already in December.”
“But in order to do that we need to see more progress from the UK side. While good progress on citizens' rights is being made, we need to see much more progress on Ireland and on a financial settlement.”
“In order to avoid any ambiguities about our work calendar, I made it very clear to Prime Minister May that this progress needs to happen at the beginning of December at the latest.”
“If there is no sufficient progress by then, I will not be in a position to propose new guidelines on transition and the future relationship at the December European Council. We agreed to meet again next Friday to assess the situation in more detail.”
Here was Mrs May at the end of the Summit:-
© EU Council
OBSERVATIONS
Recently, the Facts4EU 'Attack Dogs' have started responding to this kind of nonsense from the EU.
In the absence of a firm rebuttal from the UK government we took one look at President Tusk's tweet yesterday, which underlined what he said above, and responded robustly. Here is his tweet and our response:-
© Facts4EU.Org 2017
If you agree with us responding like this, let us know.
Below we report on the comments of the Irish PM, Leo Varadkar. We believe that it's equally important that Theresa May - and/or other members of the British government - respond robustly to these, in the same way they should to the comments of President Tusk.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 ]        07.55am, 18 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: J Slater, UK      Date/Time: 20 Nov 2017, 7.56pm
Message: Yes, yes, yes, Facts 4EU. Tweet away to Donald Tusk and anyone else who is now an enemy of the UK.
Name: Brexiter, Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 18 Nov 2017, 7.57pm
Message: The way the EU officials, and some of our so called friends inside the EU are treating the British Prime Minister is appalling. I know the concept of democracy is alien to them, you have to pool your democratic rights with 27 other countries when you join the EU. But it seems they try to humiliate her at every turn. The time is fast approaching when Theresa May should just say in answer to unelected Donald Tusk's two week deadline for progress, "jog on", and invite the EU's Barnier to contact No 10 when he is ready to talk trade. The black hole in EU finances, and a weak Merkel in Germany, and their biggest customer walking towards the exit might concentrate minds. The World Bank estimated a "no deal" Brexit would lose the UK 0.25GDP about £5billion. If true, cheap at the price.
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 18 Nov 2017, 11.04am
Message: Absolutely respond to the EU Commission in this manner as it appears they don't understand the meaning of being good neighbours - unless we do as they tell us. The dictatorial attitude from these self-important unelected people just don't know when to stop their threats, and have in my opinion now stepped way over the line. We wont accept such behaviour from UK politicians, and we're sure not putting up with it from the EU. President Tusk the UK does NOT owe the EU one single penny, or in your case, euro (other than our budget commitment). British taxpayers are NOT required to pay any imaginary EU 'exit bill'. We do NOT need to pay to hold talks regarding future UK-EU trade relations. We do NOT need to pay for access to EU markets. If anything, the EU owe British taxpayers rather a lot. We have a massive stake in ALL EU assets. I suggest they begin an audit of such assets. President Tusk has indicated beyond all doubts that any reasonable conversation cannot take place unless we submit to what is tantamount to extortion? Mrs May (UK PM) should waste no more time and walk away from these so-called 'negotiations' unless they come to their senses. TELL the EU we intend to move over to WTO rules from 1st January, 2018. We're no longer playing their pathetic game. British taxpayers have for over FORTY YEARS been extremely generous to EU member countries, and all we receive are threats. WELL NO MORE - THEIR TIME IS UP. President Tusk and his friends would do well to remember just ONE very important matter - BRITISH PEOPLE WILL NOT SUBMIT TO THREATS, INTIMIDATION OR BULLYING FROM ANYONE, just because we took a democratic decision. Peoples across continental Europe can now see for themselves first hand what the EU is about, where they WILL threaten you should you dare to exit. The EU commission have badly misjudged British resolve.
 WHEN IRISH EYES
STOP SMILING
ANTI-BRITISH NEW IRISH PM ATTACKS AGAIN
Yesterday in Gothenberg the new Irish Prime Minister, Leo Varadkar, once again showed his barely-concealed hostility to the United Kingdom
© Sky News 2017
Attending the EU’s ‘Social Summit’ in Sweden along with the other 27 leaders of the EU member states, Varadkar chose to do an interview with Sky News. Click here to watch the video. In it he was asked whether he would be likely to approve the next phase of EU-UK talks. He made it very clear that he would not.
“Ireland's trading relationship with Britain is enormous and of course we want to have a new trade arrangement.”
“But we should never forget that Brexit is a British policy, it's one that Britain has imposed on the rest of Europe and it's causing enormous difficulties for all of Europe and Ireland in particular.”
“To me it seems that after 40 years of marriage, most of them good, Britain now wants a divorce and wants an open relationship the day after.”
“It's 18 months since the referendum, it's 10 years since people who wanted a referendum started agitating for one. Sometimes it doesn't seem like they have thought all this through.”
OBSERVATIONS
So, according to Mr Varadkar Brexit is something which “Britain has imposed on the rest of Europe” as if to deliberately cause it damage.
No Mr Varadkar, it was the EU which increasingly imposed its dysfunctional and overbearing rule on us. We were forced to act in the end and the only way was by leaving, as the EU refused to negotiate or reform.
The Irish Prime Minister seemed to be suggesting some extraordinary things yesterday. His rhetoric is rapidly reaching the point where he should be very careful indeed.
He refused to rule out an Irish veto over a move to the next stage of Brexit talks and he seemed to want to offend. He is clearly ignorant about the history of the EU debate in the UK, saying “It's 18 months since the referendum, it's 10 years since people who wanted a referendum started agitating for one.”
Then to claim that “Sometimes it doesn't seem like they have thought all this through” is a quite extraordinary thing for him to say at this stage in the talks.
We will wait to see how the British public reacts – if indeed they are ever properly informed about this – but we can tell Mr Varadkar something purely from the Facts4EU.Org Team.
We find you offensive and deeply unhelpful in this process. We suggest that if your anti-British sentiments are making it impossible for you to act rationally in the economic interests of your people, you should stand aside and delegate the Irish government’s actions and statements to one of your colleagues.
Whether you like it or not Mr Varadkar, Brexit Britain is going to be a stunning success. Try to thwart us now and your actions will not be forgotten when you need us most. If however you realise your mistake quickly and start to side with the UK as you should, then Anglo-Irish relations will go back to their happy, normal self, and Ireland could soon find itself sharing in the prosperity of the post-Brexit world.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 | Sky News ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       04.50am, 18 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 18 Nov 2017, 1.38pm
Message: Everyone has differences in one way or another, though I'm shocked and disappointed by the attitude of the Irish Prime Minister, Mr Varadkar. Our two countries have a long history, a common Travel Area, and much more, long before the EEC/EU. Mr Varadkar acknowledges that Ireland has an "enormous" trading relationship with Britain and wants a new relationship, yet seeks to undermine it. Sorry Sir, but you need to answer to your masters in Brussels, for it is they, NOT YOU, who will decide what you may and may not do. Your country gave away its powers to Brussels.
The Irish people can if they wish vote Mr Varadkar out of office. They CANNOT vote out the EU Commission, which is another body that IMPOSES LAWS AND TAXES upon Irish people without their consent (or maybe Irish people are happy about that). And to think he is backing up his difficult EU masters in Brussels, whilst the UK has been generous to a fault. Mr Varadkar acknowledges a good forty years - NOT QUITE Sir, for as you know we were deceived by traitorous former UK PM Edward Heath, then Harold Wilson, and those who followed. Mr Varadkar wrongly implied we started wanting a referendum ten years ago, when it was in fact much longer than that. For decades many of us wanted OUT of this EEC/EC/EU political racket, which was sold to the people as a trading arrangement with no loss of sovereignty - FACT. We wanted our say and eventually we had it - FACT. Surely Mr Varadkar doesn't object to the democratic process - after all, that very process put him in power? I feel it's extremely arrogant for him to believe we have not thought this through. We knew there would be 'bumps along the way' and I don't personally find that to be any problem. But let us make it absolutely clear - the only delay is with the EU negotiation team and the extraordinary demands to pay an 'exit bill' when there is no legal justification to do so. Positive discussion we like, threats we do not.
Name: Denis Cooper, Berks      Date/Time: 18 Nov 2017, 11.10am
Message: This chap should realise that the past euro-creeping behaviour of the Irish government did not go unnoticed in the UK and no doubt helped to sway some of the British to vote to leave the EU. Most especially the decisions to hold repeat referendums on first the Nice Treaty and then the Lisbon Treaty when the Irish voters had given the "wrong" answers. And amusingly it was the Lisbon Treaty which the Irish government was so desperate to get approved on behalf of its German mistress that first introduced the "exit clause" which is now Article 50 TEU. A new feature which was actually raised as a point in favour of the treaty, for example here in July 2009 in the run-up to the second referendum: "In addition, Lisbon contains an exit clause providing procedures for member states wishing to leave the EU." So having supported the introduction of an exit clause why should the Irish government now object when a member state decides to use it?
Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex      Date/Time: 18 Nov 2017, 10.13am
Message: Ireland has received £52 billion from the EU since they joined. The money has transformed the country, modernized its infrastructure and farming they are happy, the loss of sovereignty has not bothered the politicians or it seems the electorate. Great Britain on the other hand has declined, almost a permanent balance of trade deficit with the EU since we joined. The UK is just excising its democratic right to vote for its own laws own politicians and its own destiny. When we vote we don't have to consider "what would the EU would think of this". The Irish are going to be in trouble when we leave, the UK is their biggest trading partner. The EU is going to force countries in the block to increase Corporation Tax, impose a financial transactions tax, and increase VAT on fuel. This at a time when Trump in the USA is reducing Corporation Tax and encouraging business based in Eire back to the States. It has been obvious for sometime that the UK will not get a good trading deal from the EU, no matter how much money we throw at them, so the UK must put massive resources into planning to drop out in March 2019. Wait for the EU to approach us the UK for Trade deals.
Name: Woke, UK      Date/Time: 18 Nov 2017, 09.13am
Message: I quite agree. Enough of this 'Eire is our friend' stuff from the UK Government. It isn't. It's long been a competitor. and there is a barely concealed contempt for the British and Northern Ireland. Time to put some pressure on them. Won't be long until the threats of a return of their private army emerge.
 'EUROPEAN' PILLAR
OF SOCIAL RIGHTS
WHAT DID MRS MAY JOINTLY PROCLAIM
AND SIGN YESTERDAY?
Yesterday Theresa May signed the ‘European Pillar of Social Rights’. She did so alongside the other 27 leaders of the Council of the EU, and representatives of the European Parliament and the Commission during the Gothenburg ‘Social Summit for fair jobs and growth’.
© EU Council 2017
Mrs May at lunch yesterday, Hungarian PM Orban on her left, EU Commission President Juncker on her right
This is how the EU describes this Proclamation:-
“The Pillar of Social Rights is about delivering new and more effective rights for citizens. It builds upon 20 key principles, structured around three categories:
  • Equal opportunities and access to the labour market
  • Fair working conditions
  • Social protection and inclusion”
OBSERVATIONS
If you managed to read the entire document, well done. It’s the usual kind of document from the EU that we have to wade through daily: full of grand, idealistic statements and good intentions. Not exactly full of facts, figures, and ‘meat’ – these are all buried in other documents and spreadsheets which it takes us days and weeks to find and trawl through. (That’s the kind of thing BBC and other journalists should be doing but don’t.)
We suggest there are a couple of things you might want to draw from this EU ‘Pillar’.
Firstly, one of the intentions of this initiative was to get the poorer EU members to up their game in terms of social protections, employment rights, etc. President Macron of France in particular is on a crusade about ‘social dumping’, whereby eastern European member states export their workers to countries like France, undercut local employment and wages, and don’t pay tax to the host country to support its obese and out-of-control social state.
Macron’s popularity is critically low in France and President Juncker is desperate to help his Europhile boy-wonder to increase his ratings. Don’t forget that Macron’s election was lauded by all the EU elites as a victory for the European Union and a defeat for populism.
Secondly, we suggest you might want to take a step back and just think about this grand ‘Proclamation’. It is about as far removed from the idea of a common trading bloc as it’s possible to get. This ‘Pillar of Social Rights’ is, as its name suggests, about societal values. It’s political, social, and global.
Make no mistake, the EU will now use this as the basis to derive all kinds of new powers to impose on its member states. It matters not what you think of a particular power – which you may think of as a good thing – the point is that it will be the EU and its unelected Commission which will be proposing legislation to give the Proclamation teeth.
The devil, as always, will be in the detail. And we’re pretty sure that there will be many areas of legal detail which the UK would have protested in vain about, if we hadn’t voted to leave the EU.
Once again we have to ask Remoaners: Just what exactly were you proposing that the UK remain in? The new EU that’s coming bears little resemblance to the one you dream of, and the one you lied to the British people about. This isn’t speculation, it’s fact.
The new Proclamation is just the latest in a long series of decisions and documents which highlights the path the EU is following. The EU you talk about is a fantasy. If it ever existed in any meaningful way, that was in the past. Time for you to wake up in 2017 and find out what the EU really is.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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 ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       07.55am, 18 Nov 2017
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 CAN WE PLEASE STOP THE LIES?
EU MIGRANTS ARE
STILL INCREASING
Latest ONS figures on EU workers shows they’ve kept coming
since the Referendum
One of the many continuations of Project Fear has been to claim that EU workers are leaving in droves because of Brexit.
This narrative has often included vague tales of EU workers being made to feel unwelcome or even to be the victims of ‘hate speech’, forcing them to uproot their families and return to their homelands.
Once again Project Fear Part 2 has been shown to be completely and utterly false. Not only have EU workers not been leaving, they have risen significantly since the Referendum and continue to rise.
BREXIT FACTS4EU.ORG SUMMARY
  • Oldest ONS data starts 4 years ago, in 2013
  • Total of EU migrant workers has jumped by 63% in 4 years
  • Increased from 1.46 million to 2.38 million workers
  • Migrant workers from Romania and Bulgaria have jumped by 176% in 4 years
  • Increased from 0.13 million to 0.35 million workers
Since Referendum
  • Total of EU migrant workers has jumped by 6.2% since June 2016
  • Migrant workers from Romania and Bulgaria have jumped by 30.9% since June 2016
Chart © Facts4EU.Org 2017
Chart © Facts4EU.Org 2017
These figures are extraordinary for a number of reasons. Firstly they totally refute the wild claims by Remoaners of a panicked mass exodus of EU migrants since the country voted to leave the EU. The migrants have kept on increasing.
Secondly, and seemingly unnoticed by commentators, the figures vindicate our long-standing claim that the government’s official numbers for the number of EU migrants in the UK has been woefully understated.
In 2016 the government used data from 2014 to show 3.025 million EU27 nationals living in the UK. We now know from the newest data released on Wednesday that they believe 1.826 million were working.
If that ratio of migrant workers to total migrants is correct, then there must now be 3.94 million EU27 nationals living in the UK. Clearly this is much higher than the usual figure of 3 million which is quoted.
BUT HASN’T NON-EU IMMIGRATION OF WORKERS BEEN JUST AS BAD?
Another favourite canard of the increasingly desperate Remain lobby has been to try to deflect attention away from mass EU immigration and start talking about immigration from other parts of the world.
Chart © Facts4EU.Org 2017
SORRY REMOANERS, THAT WON’T WORK EITHER
Above we show the long-term trend in migrants working in the UK, split between EU27 and migrants from the rest of the world. As you can see, there has been a slight fall in the last 10 years in the number of non-EU nationals working in the UK. Conversely the number of EU27 migrants working in the UK has jumped by 136%.
These are staggering figures which simply can’t be brushed off.
OBSERVATIONS
In the last two years we have consistently argued that the government’s figures (and the EU’s) severely understated immigration. In the absence of official and exact data, we looked at a variety of indicative data. Examples included National Insurance numbers issued to EU nationals, increases in demand for primary school places, increased demand for GP registrations and others.
We extrapolated from this other data to show the likely growth in EU immigration. NOTE: We reported the official figures which were bad enough, but said we believed them to be dramatically understated and used this other research to explain why.
If the national media had wanted to know the truth, all they had to do was contact us. Strangely the BBC didn’t seem to need us. In fact a good number of pro-Leave institutions and campaign organisations could also have emailed us, but unfortunately our friendly offers of help were ignored.
In any event, our conclusions in various reports published on this site were that the government was happy to continue understating the number of EU migrants in the UK, and their impact.
It’s worth remembering that it has long been the case that the major supermarkets have said privately that food sales indicate a much higher population growth than has been admitted by the government.
Now we have the full data from the ONS which shows the continued and extraordinary growth in migration from EU countries, shown in the graphs above.
We hope you find the above research interesting and useful. With your financial support we could make sure our valuable reports get in front of more people who really should see them.
Decisions are being made all the time now about Brexit. The better informed the decision-makers are, the better decisions they will make and the better Brexit we shall have.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: Office for National Statistics | Dept for Work & Pensions ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       04.50am, 17 Nov 2017
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Name: Denis Cooper, Berks      Date/Time: 17 Nov 2017, 3.27pm
Message: And according to a recent PcW study the overall economic benefit to the established population of this mass immigration from the EU is at best negligible and is more likely negative. See the comment here.
 PERPETUATING ECJ
JURISDICTION AFTER BREXIT
Sir Keir Starmer’s obsessive love affair with the Luxembourg Court
By Martin Howe QC, Lawyers for Britain
In which the EU legal expert and Chairman of Lawyers for Britain discusses a Remainer lawyer’s obsessive love of a foreign court to the extent that he forgets the importance of defending the sovereignty of the nation in whose Parliament he now sits, and forgets that the constituents he represents have the right not to be ruled by foreign courts.
Sir Keir Starmer, Shadow Spokesman for Exiting the EU, © Parliament TV
Under the EU treaties, Judges and Advocates-General who serve on the ECJ and the EU General Court at Luxembourg must be nationals of a Member State. So when we leave the European Union just before midnight on 29 March 2019, the British nationals who are currently serve in these roles will cease to hold office.
As a result, what is currently a multi-national court in which we participate
will become an entirely foreign court.
But strangely, Labour’s Brexit spokesman Sir Keir Starmer QC is seeking to perpetuate in every conceivable way the jurisdiction of this foreign court over the UK after we have left the EU. He wrote to the Prime Minister demanding that the ECJ should continue to exercise jurisdiction over the UK during any transitional period, and threatened an amendment to the EU Withdrawal Bill to make this happen if the PM does not agree. And on Monday 13 Nov 2017, in a BBC interview he argued that the ECJ should have jurisdiction over the UK for the indefinite future where we wish to enter into arrangements with EU agencies.
But it is virtually unheard of in international relations for an independent sovereign state to agree to subject itself to the jurisdiction of a foreign court. One has to go back to the 19th Century to find examples such as the (British) Supreme Court for China sitting in Shanghai, which exercised jurisdiction over British subjects in China and over their disputes with Chinese nationals to the exclusion of Chinese courts.
Nor do the EU’s own international agreements provide any support for extra-territorial ECJ jurisdiction after we have left the EU. At Lawyers for Britain we have exhaustively gone through the EU’s external agreements and cannot find any instance in which a non-Member State has accepted direct ECJ jurisdiction over itself or its relations with EU. Even the EU’s agreements with the tiny statelets of Andorra and San Marino allow them to not accept ECJ jurisdiction and instead contain balanced bilateral arbitration arrangements.
It is sensible that our courts should continue to look at ECJ judgments after exit for two main reasons. First, where our own laws remain the same as or similar to EU laws, it is helpful for our courts to continue to look at ECJ judgments interpreting those laws in the same way as our courts look at e.g. Australian court decisions when their courts interpret laws which are similar to our own. Secondly, if we enter into a post-exit treaty with the EU governing the rights of citizens and other matters, it is sensible that our courts should look at ECJ decisions, and equally that the ECJ looks at the decisions of our courts, in order to try to be consistent in interpreting the treaty.
These are instances where in accordance with general international principles of comity, courts in different countries will look at each others’ decisions and try if possible to produce consistency. But critically, no court is bound to follow a decision of a foreign court if, having weighed it up, in the end it cannot agree with it. The ability of our courts to disagree with, and at the end of the day depart from, the decisions of foreign courts is an essential part of our sovereignty.
My colleagues Francis Hoar, Dr Gunnar Beck and I have published a paper 'Adjudicating Treaty Rights After Brexit' with detailed proposals for a cooperative relationship between the ECJ and UK courts designed to lead to consistent interpretation, but where, importantly, neither court system is made subordinate to the other.
There is simply no reason for us to succumb to the rule of foreign courts after we have ceased to belong to the EU.
Nor does Keir Starmer’s invocation of EU agencies give rise to any need for an exception. To take the European Medicines Agency which he discussed in his interview, there is much sense in the UK continuing to collaborate with that Agency after we have left. And since the Agency is set up under EU law, we cannot realistically expect the EU to agree to exempt the whole Agency from the supervising jurisdiction of the EU General Court and the ECJ.
Right: The cities squabbling to be home to the EBA after Brexit, © EU Council
 
But it simply does not follow that we must therefore submit to those courts having jurisdiction in any way over the UK. We can perfectly sensibly follow EMA decisions on licensing of medicines as the normal rule, so long as the UK’s own MHRA (Medical and Healthcare Regulatory Agency) has the power for good reason to depart from EMA decisions in the UK by choosing to license drugs which the EMA has refused, or to refuse drugs the EMA has licensed. Indeed, once we have left the EU, we will have the opportunity of following Swiss law and allowing the UK MHRA to license drugs on the basis of safety assessments made by the US FDA and other competent regulatory authorities around the world, so dramatically cutting the regulatory costs of bringing drugs to the UK market. Such a system would not involve accepting the jurisdiction of US courts, any more than of the ECJ.
It has been a persistent problem of some lawyers who move into politics that they are unable to shed some of the less attractive preconceptions and attitudes which are endemic in certain sectors of the legal profession. In the case of Keir Starmer, regrettably he seems to have brought with him a lawyer’s obsessive love of the Luxembourg court to the extent that it blinds him to the importance of defending the international sovereignty of the nation in whose Parliament he now sits, and the right of the constituents he represents not to be ruled by foreign courts.
OBSERVATIONS
This is another excellent piece by Martin Howe QC. We first collaborated with Lawyers for Britain before the Referendum and have always found their research and legal opinion to be unquestionable. We are grateful to them for permission to publish this article for you here. We can thoroughly recommend all their other articles too. Some of these we have previously summarised on these pages but if you have the time and inclination then it's worth reading more of their output in full.
Right: Martin Howe QC
 
To Mr Howe's piece above we would only add one observation. It isn't only lawyers entering politics who “are unable to shed some of the less attractive preconceptions and attitudes”. This equally affects some business people who go on to run trade organisations and then enter politics, and it certainly afflicts those who have spent their entire working lives in politics.
It is as if there is some shared inferiority complex which has caused swathes of our elites to believe that the fifth-largest economy in the world - and a major diplomatic and military power - is incapable of doing anything on its own.
Thankfully Brexiteers are rather more confident and optimistic types when it comes to the abilities and prospects of the United Kingdom.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: © Lawyers for Britain ]        02.45am, 17 Nov 2017
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 GERMAN MEP GETS PRIVATE
AUDIENCE WITH MRS MAY
Yesterday, German MEP Herr Manfred Weber had a meeting with British Prime Minister Theresa May in Downing Street.
Herr Weber is currently the leader of the EPP grouping of MEPs in the EU Parliament. Following the meeting Herr Weber tweeted:
© Twitter
At a news conference he elaborated.
“After my meetings here in London my main message is I am more optimistic, there is progress ... That is the most important thing because the perspective from a European point of view towards London was in the last weeks not so clear.”
It appears that he was pleased with what Mrs May told him at the meeting. Below is a short clip of some further comments he made.
OBSERVATIONS
We must ask what Mrs May thought she was doing yesterday.
The leader of the fifth most powerful nation in the world had a meeting with a German MEP. Yes, he’s the leader of the EPP grouping, and yes, the EU Parliament has a vote on the eventual deal, if any, between the EU and the UK.
However here is what Weber said when the UK submitted the Article 50 letter:
“The British people decided to leave this union, so they will not be so comfortable, so safe, not so economically strong.”
He is one of those for whom the UK must be seen to fail for having the temerity to leave. He is an arch-Federalist and can conceive of no other outcome. He will make it his business to see the UK fail if he can.
It is entirely pointless for Theresa May to have a meeting with Herr Weber right now. It panders to these people’s ideas of their own importance. At the end of the day the political masters of the EU are the EU27 leaders, who form the EU Council. They make the decision.
The paymasters of the EU – once the UK is gone – are the Germans. Currently it’s German and British money that keeps the EU afloat. It really is that simple.
It therefore follows that if Mrs May is going to have meetings with anyone it should be with the EU’s Paymaster-General, Angela Merkel.
To have a meeting with a jumped up little MEP like Weber, who hates Brexit and would knife the UK continuously in the back if he could for decades to come, is a very poor tactical decision. It sends all the wrong messages about where Mrs May thinks the power lies in this negotiation.
Perhaps Mrs May had been told that Herr Weber is important. Well, she might like to know that her meeting with him didn’t even make the German press yesterday.
Who on earth is advising the PM about things like this? Please tell us it’s not mandarins from the Cabinet, DexEU, and the Foreign Office. They are utterly clueless about negotiations like these, that much is clear. We badly need people with experience of international trade negotiations to be involved.
Final point. Herr Weber tweeted after his meeting with the Prime Minister: "There is a willingness for compromise." It is our view that the Prime Minister has already gone far too far in what she has conceded. A vast payment and continued subjection to the ECJ, together with continued effective membership of the Single Market and Customs Union is already completely unacceptable to us.
If Mrs May indicated to Herr Weber yesterday that she might be prepared to compromise even more, we believe a large part of the country will start to rise up against her.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: Twitter | EPP ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       06.55am, 16 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Jon, Wales      Date/Time: 16 Nov 2017, 6.07pm
Message: Mr Manfred Weber is a German MEP who has ridiculed our country and our Brexit decision many times. The British electorate did not elect him, yet he appears to believe he has some significance in our country. HE HAS NONE, and is but an insignificant other? Why Mrs May (UK PM) entertained holding any (Brexit) discussions with Mr Weber in the first place, IS WRONG, and serves to PROVE that professional standards of UK protocol have been torn up, which in my view is worrying. This does however present an extraordinary opportunity. The European elections of 2014 were decisive, so I therefore look forward to Mrs May INVITING Mr Nigel Farage MEP (whose party won the UK 2014 Euro elections) to Downing Street without delay? Mr Farage knows the EU inside out, and has offered to assist many times over yet seeks nothing in return. Mrs May should put party politics to one side and use his talent in an advisory capacity, something the EU Commission would frown upon - but it's NOT their decision, but in my opinion would be a good move from a UK perspective. Look at this another way, if Mrs May can instantly promote former Chief Whip Mr Williamson CBE MP to UK Secretary of State for Defence, then I pose this question, WHO is the REAL patriot of our great country, Mr Williamson MP who doesn't believe in the Military Covenant and voted against it, or Mr Farage MEP who believes in our country with every fibre of his being, and has offered his decades of expertise and assistance in any way he can, without favour?
Name: Zorro, Berks      Date/Time: 16 Nov 2017, 1.21pm
Message: It depends on who is prepared to compromise and on what.... It would be nice to think that T May had some cunning plan unfortunately the reality tells me that she is a rather dim and clueless negotiator for us....
Name: Carole, UK      Date/Time: 16 Nov 2017, 11.45am
Message: We've heard all these rumours before, and quite frankly, when I've faltered in believing our strategy, I've been subsequently proved wrong. If the PM is a women about to cave in, then explain to me why there is a date in the EU Withdrawal Bill. And if you believe she has caved in on the ECJ then why haven't we similarly caved in on citizens rights.
Name: Brexiter Braintree Essex, UK      Date/Time: 16 Nov 2017, 09.16am
Message: If the UK "crash out" because we won't pay the ransom demanded, ie 100million Euro, the crisis for the EU starts. Germany as largest contributor wont pay more, its economy takes a hit because its biggest customer has left the cartel. They trade with the UK on WTO rules the same as the rest of the world. Merkel has yet to form a coalition Government, so trouble at home. She has to do it by Friday or face new elections. All these problems are piling up, sending out envoys to the UK to smooth the way to get a compromise deal started in the EU negotiations is in her interest. Because at the end of the day what Germany says goes. They run the EU. But these negotiations have a long way to go. I just hope David Davis and our negotiators take note of what happened when Blair gave up the British rebate for reform of CAP. Blair got nothing in return the EU reneged on the deal.
Name: Helen Taylor, UK      Date/Time: 16 Nov 2017, 08.01am
Message: I don't seem to recall it making the British press either. Tit for tat though, if it is good enough for the EU to meet with our other members of parliament, aka Corbyn, Clegg, Sturgeon and other remoaners. Theresa is not doing anything the EU is not doing. Merkel is not as strong in Germany as she was, Macron is coming under fire from France. With all the posturing that the EU is doing. He is probably trying to find out the truth rather than the hypocrisy that the EU spout.
 BITTER FAILURES, MISGUIDED,
OR JUST ANTI-DEMOCRATIC?
We are seeing the most breathtaking acts of humbug and hypocrisy in Parliament
In general terms, what the government is trying to enact in Parliament right now involves putting EU-imposed laws back into the hands of elected MPs in the UK Parliament, where they belong.
© unknown
For decades, MPs have had NO say about these thousands of laws. They have been imposed by Brussels.
No discussion. No debates. No votes.
That has been lawmaking - EU-style.
Many EU laws have suited other EU countries but have been seriously damaging to major parts of the UK economy and to the life of the UK’s citizens.
Thanks to the people voting for Brexit, the government now wishes to put these laws into the hands of British MPs, to do with as they please in future. For the moment they will become British laws on an ‘as is’ basis, with just some simple amendments where laws would otherwise contain references to EU bodies, for example.
Yes, there are some arguments of detail that can be made, but overall what is happening is very simple. Anti-democratic MPs who do not accept the result of the Referendum are using any ways possible – including opposing the current Bill – to thwart Brexit.
They even object strongly to the Brexit date (29th March 2019) being set out in the front of the Bill.
BREXIT FACTS4EU.ORG OPINION:
We do not have the luxury of weeks of debate about this.
There is much to do before Brexit and the Remainer lawyer-MPs in the House of Commons must not be allowed to indulge themselves in their petty nonsense. We know they still believe Remain is right. We know they think that those of us who didn’t vote the way they told us to are ignorant, old, or were lied to.
We don’t care.
Parliament gave the decision about Brexit to the people. We took it.
Now get on with implementing it. End of.
WHAT OF THE REMOANING RUMP IN THE HOUSE OF COMMONS?
The newspapers might be full of stories about Conservative MPs, but let’s not forget the appalling travesty that is currently the Parliamentary Labour Party.
If Labour MPs voted in accordance with their party’s policies as set out in the General Election campaign only five short months ago, the anti-democratic Tory MPs would be an irritating irrevelance.
THE LABOUR DISGRACE
Messrs Corbyn, McDonnell, and Starmer can try to spin it any way they want, the simple fact is that they tried to win power by lying to the electorate on an epic scale. Their manifesto for the June General Election was clear that they were supporting Brexit. Since then, they have backtracked on virtually every word they uttered about it. Their actions have been anti-Brexit at every step and no matter what they say it’s obvious the leadership hope to thwart Brexit completely.
This does not of course apply to a small number of Labour MPs – around 15-20 in number – who have consistently voted according to what they promised their voters. Yesterday Frank Field MP continuously had to remind his colleagues (who tried to shout him down) that the majority of Labour voters voted to leave the EU.
THE TORY REBELS
What a sad little bunch this Remoaner-Rump is. As always, they’re a disparate gaggle. Some are there mostly out of bitterness, like Sourpuss Soubry, Nicky Morgan and Sir Oliver Heald. Others are prissy has-beens such as Dominic Grieve who should clearly have answered the call of the stage rather than Parliament. Ms Heidi Allen is another who is not known for hiding from the cameras, and Vicky ‘Vichy’ Ford is also in this category, having been an MEP who loved grandstanding in Europe.
Others are chinless wonders who are enjoying a brief sojourn in the sunlight, such as Ms Sandbach, Stephen Hammond, Mr Djanogly, and Sarah Wollaston. The latter is a strange one. An MP and an MD, Dr Wollaston initially backed Leave and then switched to Remain shortly before the Referendum, thereby ensuring she will never be trusted by either side. For a doctor we must say she seems remarkably ‘uninformed’. (That’s a euphemism, by the way.)
Tom Tugendhat simply doesn’t fool us for a moment, but we understand why his constituency selectors must have thought they’d struck gold when he came up as a candidate. However we remember his uncle, Baron Tugendhat, who was an EU Commissioner and Vice President of the Commission. Nuff said.
WHERE IS THE RESPECT?
Virtually all of the rebels represent constituencies that voted Leave. Naturally they claim to be respecting the Referendum result but who do they think they’re kidding? We’ve listened to them all, and not one of them succeeded in kidding us that their motives are pure.
If an MP still believes that Remain was the right decision, that merely makes him or her an idiot in our opinion. You only have to look at what has happened since the Referendum. The EU has revealed itself as being the nasty, undemocratic, dictatorial organisation we said it was, and is pressing ahead with all the ghastly, monolithic United States of Europe plans we predicted.
All the ridiculous claims of Project Fear have been shown over and over to be complete nonsense, as the UK has produced consistently good results which fly in the face of the Armageddon which was promised - threatened - by Remain.
Apart from stupidity, Remoanerism therefore comes down to having two possible causes:-
  1. Inability to be wrong / Unwillingness to lose face
  2. Lack of belief in democracy and a belief in the sanctity of the elites
We’re simplifying, naturally, but we’re probably not far off.
SOME OF OUR CURRENT THOUGHTS
Are we extremely angry with Remoaners now? Yes. It’s 511 days since we voted to leave the EU. That’s almost 1 year and 5 months.
By the time we leave – if we leave – the EU at 11pm on 29th March 2019, it will be 1010 days since we voted to leave. That’s 3 years, 9 months and 7 days.
In most people’s book, that’s almost 4 years of their lives.
Are we angry about this? You bet your life we are. This is not what we voted for. This is the usual delaying nonsense of the elites, stopping the people doing what they want to do.
When it comes to the likes of Messrs Clarke, Clegg and Adonis - and the entire membership of the Commons Exiting the EU Committee – going to Brussels to meet the idiot Barnier, we say this: DON’T DO THIS AGAIN. You are merely serving your own interests, no-one else’s. And yes, we do consider some of you to be betraying your country.
To those MPs (and Lords) who preen and posture with their pseudo-intellectual legal shenanigans in the Houses of Parliament, attempting to thwart the largest expression of democratic will in the history of the United Kingdom, we say this:
DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE US.
DO NOT DARE STAND IN OUR WAY.
WE ARE THE MAJORITY.
OBSERVATIONS
Tomorrow we’ll go back to reporting facts, but once in a blue moon we feel we have to express the boiling frustration of the majority of our readers. It would be unhealthy for politicians not to be aware of the strength of feeling in the country as a whole, as many of them spend far too much time in their Westminster bubble.
We welcome your comments, which we will publish below in the grey box below. You can 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: Hansard ]
  As usual, journalists and politicians can contact us for the list of links to the research.
       06.55am, 16 Nov 2017
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READERS' COMMENTS
Name: Patrick H - Greater London      Date/Time: 16 Nov 2017, 4.15pm
Message: Good article and as usual, highly incisive. Of course, we all know why these loathsome individuals continue to grandstand and excrete delusive bile against the wishes of the voting majority? In their eyes, and with diminutive brainpower, they see the 48% Remainers (probably now less than 35%) of the population that did not vote for Brexit as an opportunity to continue with their deplorable rhetoric and duplicitous shenanigans! If there is a chance they can star (self-serving) they will, and as career Politicians with total disregard for the electorate, will continue to try. That these ignoramuses (worse, traitorous warts on society) get away with such disdain for democracy, beggars belief!
Name: AMB, London      Date/Time: 16 Nov 2017, 08.14am
Message: I have watched the majority of the past two days of 'debate', the majority of which appears to be re-running the A50 debate arguments, which in turn were re-running the remain campaign arguments rather than the legislation in front of them. I am shocked, though not surprised, at the lack of knowledge about the EU and the lack of understanding the process some 510 days after the vote. There is no excuse for such ignorance now. The remoaners & remainiacs are still clinging to what they think the EU is, rather than accept the reality of what is actually is and does. Many were repeating remain mantras that have long been debunked as false, and displaying a complete lack of knowledge or memory of EU processes and what the EU has actually said. On this, the EU have been very clear - leaving the EU means leaving all institutions that the EU consists of, and to which the UK is part of by virtue of its EU membership. Yet we still have MPs demanding the reversal of these elements that it only in the EU's ability to grant. These are pathetic and thinly veiled attempts to circumvent the people's decision to leave. They should be concentrating on their day job - examining and drafting legislation for after we've left which includes the raft of EU legislation that should be amended/repealed. I suppose that I should not be surprised that so many appear to be scared to accept the responsibility of our own law-making as EU law has just been rubber-stamped through over the years, but the levels of incompetence by many, with no research into the facts nor acceptance of reality, scares the bejabas out of me as these people will be responsible for future law-making. Most should not be sitting where they are now...
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