Albert Einstein famously declared that doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results was insane. Saying the wrong (incorrect) thing over and over again and expecting it to be right (correct) is equally insane.
Many motorists hoping to travel to the continent and many merely seeking to arrive in Dover have been subjected to the most awful delays. And for those unfortunate to have young children in their cars…………………………………..
Yet these effects might be a small harbinger of the catastrophic consequences were the Brexit negotiations to fail.
At this point rather than to explain further let us put things in terms politicians understand: No government could continue in office in the immediate aftermath of what would constitute a failure at the end of the Brexit negotiations. The government would fall and fall immediately. Chaos would ensue and after the general election chaos would continue. In these circumstances, the “winners” – the party whose leader was invited by the Queen to form a government would in fact be the “losers” as this would truly be the most poisonous of poisoned chalices!
So severe would the chaos be and so fractured has our multi-cultural, multi-ethnic, multi-faith, multi-gender society become that we seriously fear that democracy could find itself suspended.
Thus all talk of leaving the single market and negotiating a trade deal is the greatest moonshine east of Louisville, Kentucky.
An example of the 1800 degree proof of this moonshine is the statement utter by one lunatic who declared that after Norway had rejected EU membership in 1972, the Norwegians negotiated a trade deal with the EU in just under eight months and then went on to state that “might take rather longer….”
This would have been like Ship’s Surgeon, James Farquhar telling Admiral Lord Nelson that the amputation of his arm, “might hurt a little!” Nelson had been hit in the right arm by a musket ball shortly after stepping ashore on the Spanish island of Tenerife in July 1797. He was taken to HMS Theseus for treatment, where he was bleeding heavily. On 25th July the ship’s surgeon, James Farquhar, wrote in his journal: “Compound fracture of the right arm by a musket ball passing thro’ a little above the elbow; an artery divided; the arm was immediately amputated.”
At the time Norway concluded a deal with the six Member States of the EEC. It ran to 113 pages. The treaty was seven pages. The rest essentially dealt with tariff reductions, the basis for which had already set by the GATT Agreement.
Contemporary free trade agreements are VERY different!
The EU agreement with the Republic of Korea runs to 1,426 pages. This is accompanied by a 64-page framework agreement, with negotiations having started in 1993 and running on for 18 years before the agreements entered into force on 1 July 2011.
The EU-Canada Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) which runs to 1,598 pages. More than seven years after the main negotiations started, it is still not in force.
The chances of the UK and the EU negotiating a trade deal in less than two years are slightly less that the odds are of winning the Euromillions lottery jackpot TWICE.
So, to quote Inspector Harold Francis “Dirty Harry” Callahan, the question that has to be asked of Messrs. Johnson, Davis & Fox aka “The Three Monkeys” is: “Do you feel lucky?”
Then of course we get more moonshine served up with talk of German car manufacturers and French wine producers losing market share in the UK would create substantial pressure to get a deal concluded within the two-year period allowed by the Lisbon Treaty.
FACT: The EU does not need a trade deal to export to the UK.
FACT: the UK cannot impose any barriers to goods from the EU, without also imposing those self-same barriers on all other countries selling goods to the UK. This is part of WTO non-discrimination rules, where the UK acquires Most Favoured Nation (MFN) status.
FACT: the EU – because it exist as a Regional Trade Agreement (RTA) – is allowed to impose discriminatory access rules to its members’ markets, applying to nations defined as “third countries” a complex series of hurdles that make import difficult and expensive.
FACT: the UK would become a “third county” immediately upon Brexit. EU barriers apply automatically to “third countries”, built into the EU acquis.
Many in UKIP of course talk about WTO default. Disregarding the “Littel local difficulty” in being unable to handle the paperwork and being force to rely on the EU for a transitional period, they ignore the effects of non-tariff barriers. Within the Single Market, most of these have been eliminated but, on exiting the market, many would re-emerge.
The negative impacts of these however would pale into utter insignificance when compared to the absolute chaos and grid lock at the UK’s ports!
With no agreement on Brexit importers would find the situation almost impossible!”
Because within the EU it is the importers’ responsibility to ensure compliance of products presented to EU Member States ports, without evidence of which they cannot be released into circulation.
Without formal arrangements for testing and recognition of the associated documentation, consignments which were previously allowed through on the basis of documentation checks alone will have to be physically inspected. In many instances loads will have to be sampled and detained while testing is carried out.
That is not even the half of it!
The above applies to general goods, but for food and agricultural products, different regulations apply.
Such products must enter though specific ports, designated as Border Inspection Posts (BIPs) specific for each country!
Maybe now the penny is beginning to drop?
Yes, that’s right! There are no BIPs for the UK as we are in the Single Market!
So one has to be set up!
To equip a port (or ports) to function as a BIP capable of handling the traffic from the UK would require a major investment in infrastructure, personnel and systems. Exports of food to the EU-27 would cease, until facilities were made available.
All trade in such goods would cease until such a time as a BIP was set up!
Maybe now the full extent of this insanity is dawning!
But then that is not the end of the insanity. It gets worse!
There are those (Yes John Redwood, we mean you!) who appear to inhabit a place somewhere between this Earth and Fuller’s!
These strange other worldly beings utter the siren mantra of repealing the ECA, 1972 in place of Article 50 invocation!
Were this done the above effects would be multiplied and apply immediately upon the Royal Assent!
So to REPEAT and for the umpteenth time: FLEXCIT, authored by Doctor Richard North and others is the ONLY way to Brexit!
And if Scotland is to be kept in the Union then the Lafrowda Solution (http://www.british-gazette.co.uk/2016/07/16/the-lafrowda-solution-the-european-communities-disapplication-england-and-wales-bill/) is the way to go.