Today Theresa May gave another speech on her view of what we want from Brexit.
I have read and listened to the full speech and here are some of my first impressions. Do let me know what you think in the comment below. You can read the full text here, or watch it below.
May’s Five Tests
- “Must respect the referendum.” NO! It should implement it
- “While the means may change our shared goals surely have not.” That depends on what you think of as our shared goals. Much of Europe, well much of the bureaucracy of the EU is seeking an “ever closer union” and an EU Army etc. NO, We do not share these goals and it is to be out from under this vision of Europe, a United States of Europe that many of us voted for Brexit.
- “Tolerant” a much miss used word. I am often reminded by a clip I play at the beginning of our Podcasts that, “Tolerance is not a word we find in the Bible.” We must not tolerate Crime, FGM, the oppression of women, the indoctrination of our children in liberal schools and colleges. The ‘tolerant left’ are intolerant of Christian moral standards. Theresa, we need to speak more clearly of what you think you are putting forward to us. Diversity to is not always a good thing. Yes, diversity in varieties of apples, but diversity of aims for a business will often lead to strife. Is one group seeks to impose sharia law and the others do not want it, we will not have harmony but strife.
- Not easy while some political parties are trying to divide the Union. Like I said in ‘4’ above, diversity is not always helpful.
“The implementation period must be time-limited and can not become a permanent solution.” Very good. In fact, it should be as short as possible, maybe even no time at all.
No to free movement – good.
If WTO means a “significant reduction in our access to each others markets,” that would cut both ways and increase the opportunities for homegrown industry to meet the shortfall in the UK.
The idea that we can do away with customs and regulatory checks is a pipe dream Mrs May. If we are to have a secure border, we must secure it. We can not take it on trust that everyone will be a gentleman and obey the law.
It may not be possible to uphold the Belfast Agreement. Ireland is a real problem, and where it not for the animosity between groups could be fixed either by a united Ireland or by not hating and killing people who live in a divided Ireland. However, hoping that we can have one side of Ireland fully integrated into the EU and the other half-fully part of the United Kingdom with no border, is probably not possible. We must face it, deal with it and stop pretending that we can wish it away.
“I am not going to let our departure from the European Union do anything to set back the historic progress that we have made in Northern Ireland – nor will I allow anything that would damage the integrity of our precious Union.” This just may not be possible.
We may have to offer a second referendum to the people of Ireland, or at least Northen Ireland.
- Northern Ireland joins the south in the EU.
- We have a hard border.
- The south joins the north in the United Kingdom.
I think the vote would be for a heard border.
May’s Hard Facts
“We are leaving the single market.” Good
The European Court of Justice may have an effect on what the EU do, and it may have a say about goods that we send to Europe, but it must NEVER have authority over UK citizens or businesses. And we must be very careful just how far our courts bring ECJ judgment into their consideration of UK law and judgments. We have seen recently just how obstructive US judges can be.
“If, as part of our future partnership, Parliament passes an identical law to an EU law, it may make sense for our courts to look at the appropriate ECJ judgments so that we both interpret those laws consistently. This is worrying. UK law will presumably be in English and should be interpreted in the light of the whole of the UK jurisprudence, case law etc. UK business and individuals should not have to be constantly looking over their shoulders to see who and what the courts in the EU are doing.
“We may choose to commit some areas of our regulations like state aid and competition to remaining in step with the EU’s.” If we do, we MUST be very careful. Careful not to end up on another binding treaty that put us at a disadvantage with the rest of the world for example.
“We share the same set of fundamental beliefs” This is not really true. France, for example, is an atheist country, we despite all that has gone on over the last few decades have a Christian background and foundation for our values. We have the Magna Carta, France has the revolution.
“We want the freedom to negotiate trade agreements with other countries around the world.” YES.
“We want to take back control of our laws.” YES.
“We also want as frictionless a border as possible between us and the EU – so that we don’t damage the integrated supply chains our industries depend” If possible.
“Don’t have a hard border between Northern Ireland and Ireland.” I think this is a dream.
“We both need to face the fact that this is a negotiation and neither of us can have exactly what we want.” The UK government needs to face that fact that the UK population is not looking for a new treaty that will tie our hands and put us back under the jackboot of Germany.
Future Economic Partnership
” I want the broadest and deepest possible partnership – covering more sectors and co-operating more fully than any Free Trade Agreement anywhere in the world today.” This must not put us back three quarters into the EU again.
Free trade – YES, Partnership… Not so sure about this.
- “Reciprocal binding commitments” This must be very carefully watched.
- “Arbitration mechanism” Humm. I am very unsure about this. Why can not deals just be made in one country or another and be covered by the laws of that country? i.e. If I order a widget from Spain, the laws of Spain cover that contract. If a Greman buys a bike from the UK the UK laws cover this contract. If the Greman want the bike to be green or blue or to meet EU standards, this should be specified in any order placed, but the contract is made under UK law.
- I am not sure why we need synchronised regulations for drugs. The EU can specify a drugs makeup, we can make it for them, and they can buy it if they wish. They should not be able to specify how we make it, but what it should consist of.
- “An arrangement for data protection” Why? Do we have such an agreement with Zimbabwe or the USA or the other 100+nations of the world?
- “As we leave the EU, free movement of people will come to an end and we will control the number of people who come to live in our country.” Praise God! And about time. Yesterday, a local factory’s workers had trouble getting past our house because of the snow. we whet out to help push them etc. almost non-spoke English. Many did not appear to have even one word of English.
“A strong commitment that its regulatory standards” While we should be prepared to manufacture good for export to the EU to EU standards, that should be the end of it. There is more than reasonable opportunity to have goods made to more than one standard. UK cars have the steering wheel on the right, Cars for export to the EU on the left. No big deal. We do not need to commit to applying EU standards to our goods.
“businesses who export to the EU tell us that it is strongly in their interest to have a single set of regulatory standards that mean they can sell into the UK and EU markets.” We should be free to have a single set of regulatory standards or to just meet the EU standards for goods we are going to export into the EU.
“the UK could remain part of EU agencies” five points…. not bad.
Agrifood and Fisheries
“We are leaving the Common Agricultural Policy and will want to take the opportunity that brings to reform our agriculture and fisheries management.” Fantastic!
“We are also leaving the Common Fisheries Policy.” Great!
Generally, this seems good… but what is this about broadcasting? Don’t you just put in the URL and the programme pops up… on your screen. The internet should not know borders unless you are in China.
“The approach I have set out today would: implement the referendum result” That is better than the “must respect the referendum” that we had at the beginning of this speech.
Well, this is not a bad as some have said, not terrible and many of my comments are minor and really just a plea for us to be clear that we are not under Europe anymore.