Sunday 15th July
Occasionally I have been at the point of despair; once or twice in my private life I have seen no way out – although clearly there was indeed a way out.
But – at the moment I almost despair of the Political situation we find ourselves in. We have a Government which is almost at the point of paralysis, falling apart before our very eyes. Brexit, which was the worst decision (to even grant the referendum, let alone to lose it) this country has made, probably since the War. Almost every Prime Minister since 1945 has favoured European Co-operation. Churchill (who even Boris admires), Macmillan, Harold Wilson and Callaghan, Heath, even Thatcher for most of her reign (she was one of the architects of the Single market) Major, Blair, Brown and Cameron all supported being a member of the EU. And….even Theresa May was a Remainer. And yet, we are in the deepest of dark holes, and all we seem to be doing is digging ourselves deeper.
And, this saddens me too, my own party – Labour, are just as hopeless. I understand their problem, and incidentally that of every single M.P. Many Labour Constituencies voted for Brexit, as did many Tory ones. But a lot voted Remain.
And this is at the heart of the problem. Whatever happens now – Mrs. May’s compromise, a hard Brexit a la Boris, a slightly softer one posited by Keir Starmer, a continuation of the Customs union, or even the Single Market. Or, worst scenario of all – a No Deal (which incidentally means no transition either and harsh reality on 30th March next year), the arguments will continue.
We will never resolve this satisfactorily. The Anti-Immigration Rabbit has jumped out of the top hat, and no conjurer can possibly induce it back in. I can see nobody being happy with any result. Both Remainers and Leavers will feel cheated, and any bad economic news in the future will be blamed by both sides on a Bad Brexit.
If only there were some real leadership; both Theresa and Jeremy are trying desperately to come up with a compromise which holds most of their party together. No-one is really leading. No-one is trying to come up with the best deal for the whole country. No-one is even certain of the next few days, let alone the next few years.
And, even another referendum will really sort anything either.
But we must not despair – maybe the EU itself will actually save us from ourselves. Maybe they will give us more time, time to come up with a better deal, time to even have an election, time to change our minds…
I doubt it, but in the end, ironically, the EU may be our only hope.