• Brexit: Fake or fortune?

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    Above, the presenter and journalist Fiona Bruce who teams up with art expert Philip Mould to investigate mysteries behind paintings and drawings in the Sunday evening programme (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01mxxz6) on BBC1. Yesterday evening this popular programme had Fiona Bruce and Philip Mould impart some good news and some bad news to two individuals featured on the programme about two art works each owned. There was a lady who was given the good news that the drawing she owned was indeed drawn by the famous French post-Impressionist artist, Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin. Mr Mould estimated that at auction the drawing could reach £200,000 or even more. When asked if she was going to sell the drawing the lady replied that she would, adding that she would be able to pay off the mortgage on her home with the proceeds. A very sensible course of action.

    Unfortunately Fiona Bruce and Philip Mould had some bad news to impart to a gentleman who had hoped that he owned an oil painting also painted by Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin. Sadly, after a thorough investigation, the expert opinion was that the painting had been painted by someone other than Monsieur Gauguin and as a result instead of being worth millions was only worth – according to Mr Mould – “something in the high hundreds.” The gentleman took this news with commendable stoicism.

    This peak period Sunday evening fare from the BBC is understandably very popular with the general viewing public. This is because it delves into a world where ordinary folk (such as the lady with the mortgage) do not inhabit. This is a world that is exclusive. The passport to enter being the possession of great wealth. This is a world inhabited by billionaires and multi-millionaires. It is from time to time also inhabited by millionaires, but then the average commuter from Epsom who is an owner occupier is often a millionaire – on paper – and does not inhabit this world. The rarefied art world finds many of it’s inhabitants resident in places such as Monte Carlo. Mainly because many of these folk begrudge paying much in the way of tax! Many will be feeling rather sorry for themselves as they will have viewed the destruction wrought by Hurricane Irma on the “BVI” or British Virgin Islands where many have [Should that be had? - Ed.] yachts and other pleasure craft. You see, as well as being islands where hurricanes happen, it is also a tax haven!

    Of course it is the possession of great wealth that enables these people to pay £200 million (https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2015/feb/07/paul-gauguins-when-will-you-marry-becomes-most-expensive-artwork-ever) for the work by Monsieur Gauguin that was the ultimate work for which the lady’s drawing was the preparation.

    Such is the nature of works of art – that they can be forged – and the enormous sums involved, that it is inevitable that forgers seek victims from amongst this vastly wealthy coterie of plutocrats. Thus it is that an attribution can increase the market value of a work of art exponentially.

    Of course, the forger must be aware not only of the potential profits but also the potential costs of being caught! You see, if you Dear Reader were say to produce an oil painting and to put the late Monsieur Gauguin’s signature on it and were this to be accepted – with the false provenance and attribution you had created along with it – and you were to profit by say £100 million – and you were subsequently caught – you would find yourself incarcerated within the austere comfort of a maximum security “correctional institution” for decades! This is because the “powers that be” who rule this world would regard you as a very serious criminal and a person the general public needs to be protected from!

    So we hear you ask: What the [expletive deleted] does this have to do with Brexit?


    When the history of the 21st Century is written, the decade starting from Thursday 7th May 2015, the date of the United Kingdom’s general election will be dominated by the UK’s relationship with the EU.

    We would commend all who were involved in the EU Referendum to read Sir Walter Scott’s historical romance, Marmion; A Tale of Flodden Field and in particular Canto VI, XVII:

    Oh, what a tangled web we weave
    When first we practise to deceive!

    FACTS have to be faced!

    From start to finish, on both sides, the whole process was, is and appears set to be riddled with falsehoods. It started with former Prime Minister David Chameleon and his sustained and persistent mendacity regarding the “not even a fig leaf” set of concessions he said he had wrought from the EU.

    Right throughout the campaign and since, the British people have been told falsehood after falsehood. The question is, how many of these falsehoods are lies and how many are not?

    You see, a falsehood need not be a lie. To be a lie the falsehood needs to be accompanied by Mens rea (Latin for “guilty mind”). Because virtually all UKIPers are lacking Mens rea, their falsehoods are merely honestly held incorrect beliefs.

    The important questions are who are and what are the intentions of those who are lying about Brexit?

    There are various scenarios one can speculate upon:

    Firstly, there is “the Eurozone conspiracy.” This is where a “hard Brexit” is engineered to cause chaos and economic disruption in the short term with the intention of having the UK re-enter the EU but in addition to enter the Eurozone.

    This conspiracy theory has some logic to it. You see, the FACT is that the UK has contributed significantly to the size of the EU in terms of GDP and population. It is a FACT that the Euro is a central pillar of the EU. Were the UK to continue as an EU ember and enter the Eurozone, the Euro’s prospects would be improved. However, there are a lot of problems with this theory. For a start, it requires large numbers of Tories to commit political suicide!

    Secondly there is “The Age of Stupid non-conspiracy”, the title taken from the 2009 environmental propaganda film by Franny Armstrong. This is where the most of the Tories are in fact as clueless as the UKIP membership! To believe this non-conspiracy theory one must believe that most cabinet ministers (including those who campaigned for remaining in the EU) are in fact fools. IF this theory is correct the end result may be the same as the Eurozone conspiracy the UK re-enters the EU and in addition, enter the Eurozone!

    Thirdly there is “The School for Scoundrels conspiracy”, the title taken from the 1960 British comedy film, directed by Robert Hamer, starring Ian Carmichael and Terry-Thomas, and inspired by the “Gamesmanship” series of books by Stephen Potter.

    The detail surrounding this conspiracy is outlined in our earlier article.
    GOTO: http://www.british-gazette.co.uk/2017/09/01/brexit-achieving-the-impossible/
    Basically it is this: The Tories, having realised that the campaigns were both full of falsehoods want to dig themselves out of the deep hole the Chameleon dug for them! They realise that the “Norway Option” aka Flexcit, is the ONLY practical Brexit strategy but realise that the electorate did not vote for this. They voted to end free movement of EU citizens. They knew that this was NOT possible whilst remaining in the EEA. They also knew that leaving the EU through conventional Article 50 negotiations would mean paying a huge amount of money to the EU! Paying £100 billion to the EU would make the Tories chances of being re-elected somewhat less than Richard Dawkins’s chances of becoming the next Archbishop of Canterbury!

    The theory is this: that one of more Tories decide to employ “gamesmanship” against the unsuspecting and unfortunate Comrade Corbyn! Thus the plan would be to set out to achieve the Brexit that would make UKIP happy but would be stopped by legal and parliamentary action. Thus they would be forced by the Supreme Court and/or the opposition parties to have the UK leave the EU but remain in the EEA by default. Of course, the EU would ONLY accept this were the UK to accept the authority of the ECJ!

    NB: In UK political terms, it would help the Tories were the Supreme Court to rule that this was the case!

    The Tories would then be able to go to an angry electorate as say: “It wasn’t me guv! It was them!”

    There is of course something of an elephant size fly in the Tories ointment: the European Union!

    The UK’s former “partners” not to mention the EU Commission will not take kindly to such “gamesmanship”! If the Tories are thinking that they can avoid the UK’s RAL commitments through a clever sleight of legal hand then they are being naïve. Such a strategy may well result in an even greater bill than would otherwise have been the case. A “School for Scoundrels strategy” is a reckless gamble.

    Fourthly, there is “the Kelly’s Heroes Conspiracy”, the title taken from the US 1970 war comedy film directed by Brian G. Hutton about a group of World War II American soldiers who go AWOL to rob a bank behind enemy lines.

    This is a theory that is supported by the learned Dr. North. It supposes that there might be a conspiracy between certain parties to engineer a “hard Brexit” with the concomitant economic chaos with the intention of causing a crash specifically in the London property markets. Following such a crash some of these parties would purchase assets at greatly reduced prices. They would then sit of them and await an eventual recovery in market values. This of course could also apply to UK businesses also adversely and temporarily affected.

    NB: Declaration of interest. The Editor has taken precautions against this eventuality.

    Notwithstanding Dr. North’s great understanding, the British Gazette has some issues with this conspiracy theory. You see, it requires two things:

    1. a high level of stupidity on the part of many civil servants and politicians who are not part of the conspiracy.
    2. a realisation that the conspiracy could be a criminal conspiracy and if so and if caught, the perpetrators would be looking at spending many, many years in one of HM’s prisons! They would also have to be aware that since the action was perpetrated after 2002, POCA (Proceeds of Crime Act) would apply which would mean that as well as spending many years in prison, their assets would be confiscated!

    So, which conspiracy does the Editor plump for?

    Numéro trois; “The School for Scoundrels conspiracy”. My late father gave me some sound advice: “Never trust a Tory!”
    NB: Jeremy, take heed!

    • I go along with much of this, indeed altho’ depart a little from the suggestion what the majority of Ukipers actually believe.

      We have become battle – hardened by falsehoods spun around the 6pm and 10′o clock news again and again and wince each time we hear interference by EU propaganda, usually infiltrated through the BBC by ‘ Media Grant ‘ ( our taxes ).

      Hence, we stand by our principles, putting letters in the press correcting falsehoods, much to the irritation of our political opponents as they realise they have been rumbled.

      Stuart Guppy
      St. Ives

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