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Monthly Archives: June 2021

Too little, too late

Why? Hancock’s Half Hour

The repetitive “why” technique is good for getting to root causes which I’ve used extensively as a scientist and MBA tutor. Here is a vastly reduced form of the technique applied to the case of “Matt Hancock’s Half Hour”:

Q : Why is Matt Hancock being investigated?

A : Because he kissed a woman and grabbed her arse?

WRONG.

A : Because he made policy decisions that led to 150 000 Corona deaths?

WRONG.

A : Because Johnson needs a distraction from the growth of the COVID Delta variant?

In part, YES.

A : Because Johnson needs a distraction from the next stages of Brexit?

In part, YES.

Q : Should Hancock be sacked?

A : Yes, but, of course this lets Johnson, Gove, Redwood, Sunak, Leadsom, Patel, Raab, Baker, McVey, Francois, Truss, Whately, Duncan Smith, Mogg, Dacre, Murdoch, The Barclays, Foster, Davis, Jenrick, Zahawi, Coffey, Farage, Eustace, Hoey, Trump, Elliot, Cameron, Corbyn, May, Mc Cluskey, Fox, Field, Jenkin, Hannan, Cummings et al off the hook, not to mention their shadowy acolytes. Who did I miss? Sunak is an interesting example as many people think him benign. However, Julia Smith points out that Sunak deliberately ignored 3.5 million self employed people. A small number of these killed themselves as a result. Brexit extremism is not without its human consequences.

Q : What then is the root cause of Hancock? i.e. Why is Hancock Hancock?

A : Johnson.

Q : What then is the root cause of Johnson? i.e. Why is Johnson Johnson?

A : Brexit and Corona.

Q : What does Brexit and Corona lead to?

A : A Britastrophe.


Notes from Don Adamson on Hancock’s Half Hour:

(a) 100,000 of those deaths could have been avoided but for this government’s inexcusable incompetence. That makes Johnson and Hancock Premier League mass murderers.

(b) Brexit was always for the benefit of tax dodgers and other criminals. It was never for the benefit of decent people.

(c) Johnson has a licence to be dictator until 2024.

The worst is yet to come.

Read our recent articles:

Five Years – A review of five years of Brexit “benefits”.

Career opportunities – Our application to work for the Cabinet Office to find the Brexit benefits.

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Thank you to Don Adamson, Rachel Ashley, Daphne Franks, Carole Stone and Julia Smith for their help with the production of this article.

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Brexit opportunities

Career opportunities

There is a job going for Director, Brexit opportunities in the Cabinet Office – I was excited by the prospect of finding out what these were after five years of waiting patiently so I have applied. My application is below. I’d urge you to do the same. Here is the specification:

Brexit opportunities

Dear Lord Sir David Frost,

I have been an avid follower of your work ever since The Frost Report and I was excited to see your research post for a Director of the BOU (Brexit Opportunities Unit). You need look no further, as you have found your man. To quote ELO, ‘I’ve been searchin’ for five years on my own account, meticulously comparing what we had in the EU with what we are getting, now that Brexit is out of the oven. I’d like to continue that research in the quest for the economic, social, technological, ethical, environmental and constitutional benefits of Brexit. As far as your job specification goes, I meet and exceed your requirements, in brief:

  • I am a skilled researcher, covering qualitative and quantitative methods, survey design and communications. With 3.5 degrees covering science, business and HR, I am quite used to dealing with the distortion of data by politicians, so I’d be more than able to extract the Brexit benefits from the background noise, if they exist. Broadly speaking, I am happy to continue with your line of “if the facts don’t fit the story, change the facts or just erase them”.
  • I am used to dealing with intelligent senior people across industry, politics, media and in public life. I am quite sure I could “level down” to work with imbeciles, sycophants and psychopaths as required by the role. I met the Prime Minister in 2012 shortly after the Olympics when he was dating a young woman so we have actually met.
  • In terms of change management, I have written 12 books on leadership and one on the question of changing minds on Brexit. Admittedly, the strategies in “Let’s Talk About BREX .. it” are directed towards the removal of illusions and fantasies about Brexit, what I call “Brexorcism”. However, these change management strategies are just as applicable to the erasure of people’s minds who voted to Remain, although it may be a lot quicker to round these people up and send them to a BCC (Brexit Concentration Camp) – in fact, I will make a proposal on this separate matter to Priti Patel shortly. I am prepared to work on this for 50 years as suggested by Jacob Rees-Mogg.
Change minds on Brexit
  • In terms of commanding confidence, I am a skilled practitioner of speaking truth to power. I see that lying is a precondition for doing the job and I would cope with this by using a placard saying “fake news” whenever I give a public brief to the media for greater clarity. In any case, in the post-Brexit world, the truth is an expensive luxury. I see that you, Johnson, Patel, Hancock, Raab, Duncan Smith, Francois et al. have managed to get by without needing to get dragged down by the truth. Bravo!!
  • As regards changing laws, I have no respect for the law, having been let down by the Police on several occasions when being attacked by Brexiteers. This means that I regard the law as unimportant in the quest to get Brexit done. Judges and the judiciary are one of the areas we must target to remove the scales of justice from people’s eyes.
  • I was considered to be too organised to get a job for Dominic Cummings. This demonstrates my ability to stick at something that has been a proven failure over the long term.
Dealing with the Russians at Parliament – Photograph by Bruce Tanner http://www.brucetanner.com
  • Crucially I have no political experience at all, a massive asset in a political world befuddled by political experts.  Who needs experts (Gove, Govia). But I am good at coming up with meaningless phrases to describe the toxic cocktail of Corona crisis + Brexit disaster aka “Britastrophe“.
  • In the words of The Clash “I hate the army and I hate the R.A.F. I don’t wanna go fighting in the tropical heat. I hate the civil service rules. I won’t open a letter bomb for you.”
  • Put plainly, if Dido Harding can run the NHS, I can run the fucking Cabinet Office, FFS.
  • In summary, 27 years diverse experience as a business consultant, author, speaker and academic, working with companies such as Unilever, Pfizer, The UN, Virgin, BP. Find me at Linkedin.

On the suggestion of Julia Smith, may I ask for these other fringe benefits:

  • Free flags for my home, car etc.
  • Private health insurance delivered by the NHS
  • Cocaine discounts
  • Free use of the Royal Yacht Brexit McBrexitFace at weekends
  • Exclusive access to PPE contracts for which I am quite unsuitable @ £107 million per item
  • I require a minimum of two cats in the office at anyone time and a supply of fresh food for the kitties
  • A job for my son in strategic management
  • A gravy train and two year’s supply of Bisto

Yours in waiting

Peter

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Ignorance is the new intelligence
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Five Years

Five years on and Brexit’s still undone. I often get quaint looks when I talk about Brexit in Kent now and some subtle or even less subtle social disapproval. For the record, I’m quite happy to be considered to be “so last year” until I am returned to the soil by my maker, or Brexit is placed in a shallow grave, whichever comes soonest. Brexit is in fact undone now that Johnson has realised he never read the contract. It will never be “done”. I told everyone that we’d be doing Brexit for the next 50 years and it begins to look that way. In five years it becomes apparent that we still don’t know what Brexit means but we are beginning to make some evaluation of what Brexit has brought us.

Economic effects

£2.3 Trillion was lost in just one month from the city of London. Just for comparison and scale, that’s 58 years’ worth of our contribution of £39 billion to the EU wiped out in just one month. So, we would have to make up our losses due to Brexit until 2079 just from this impact alone. Let that sink in!!

Our Australia trade deal is worth 0.02% of GDP over 15 years. It would take 2000 deals like this to even make up our losses from our arrangements with the EU. At a generous estimate of our rate of deal making, we can expect to make up the losses from Brexit in trade deals by the year 3021. I know that’s bad economics as not all trade deals are worthless and some also take years not months but I think you should get the point.

£37 billion has wasted on test and trace. That’s more than what it takes to land a space mission on Mars at a mere £22.5 billion. Our contribution to the EU is £39 billion per year.

Despite promises made to fishermen on Brexit, the UK fishing industry will have been filleted by the time any new arrangements come into being with £1 Million being bled from the fisherman every DAY. Yet, we plan to spend £200 million on a Royal Yacht that the Royal family do not want or need. Brexit McBrexitFace will no doubt spend its time trawling international waters trying to net trade deals without catching anything more than scurvy.

Brexit shrank UK services exports by more than £110 billion over a four-year period. That’s 3 x our yearly contribution to the EU, much of which we get back.

Farmers have also been sold down the river with the introduction of hormone fed beef and the dumping of poor quality products into UK markets, just so that Liz Truss can claim success.

The building industry is beginning to show cracks with materials shortages and other supply chains being affected.

Food and drink exports from UK have declined by 50% since the beginning of 2021.

The UK has been on a downward slide in terms of our overall credit rating.

Coming soon, having lost EU steel import protections, our steel industry now faces a wave of cheap imports.

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Social / Welfare / Environmental

Brexit has been all consuming on Civil Service bandwidth and this means that there have been numerous areas of neglect. For example: social care, Grenfell, The Northern Ireland protocol and citizenship issues remain undone with massive consequences for lives and livelihoods. 305 000 people are caught in civil service backlogs for settled status and Johnson says he will not budge on the deadline of June 30th with impact on breaking up families and imprisonment at borders. Big issues in 2016 are still issues in 2021 due to the significant entropy of Brexit on progress across the board of Government.

“You can stay but your kids can’t”.

We are yet to see the whole impact of the end of the grace period at the borders but already all major supermarkets have imposed rationing on tinned tomatoes with food shortages predicted in the coming months and the army on standby.

There have been notable increases in racist attacks, tension between Brexiteers and Remainers and a disunited Kingdom.

And, of course, far from taking back control of £350 million per week for the NHS, Dido Harding is on the way to privatising your NHS. Was this on the side of a bus?

We did not need to do Brexit to deal with immigration. Our hostile environment has discouraged Europeans to work here. In particular we have seen a sharp decline in fruit pickers, care workers and other professions. The arguments made by Brexiteers to “grow our own” have not gathered any takers …

Political / Constitutional

The destruction of peace in Northern Ireland has already begun by the reckless abandonment of the Good Friday Agreement. Johnson promised there would be no border down the Irish Sea. He broke that promise, ending 30 years of peace on the island of Ireland. Kate Hoey has been cynically and dangerously stoking the fires of unrest in Northern Ireland, having promoted Brexit.

The destruction of the United Kingdom has begun with Scotland seeking independence, reunification of Ireland and independence movements beginning in Cornwall and the North East. Independence for Scotland and unity for Ireland are of course good things and entirely predictable consequences of Brexit. In extremis, England will be reduced to the People’s Republic of Thurrock by 2040!! Gibraltar has special status as a means of dealing with the fact that the majority of residents work in Spain. In 10-20 years time we can expect Gibraltar to be under Spanish control. The same goes for The Falkland Islands, The Channel Islands and The Isle of Man.

The UK is now a four nation state and a one party state with no effective opposition. It may sound hard to say this but Brexit is as much a product of a passive and fearful opposition than it is the result of a hard core of Brexit ultras and psychopaths.

Britain no longer has a special relationship with the USA as President Biden seeks to re-educate us about the realities of breaking international law. At the same time Biden has forged stronger links with Europe as a natural partner of similar size in terms of trade and other opportunities.

I invite Brexiteers to provide a list of benefits of Brexit – Five years waiting

Ethical / Legal

Protest is now being clamped down on, using COVID as an umbrella to hide under. Boris Johnson is to remove the powers of the Electoral Commission after they asked awkward questions about the redecoration of his flat.

Crony contracting continues as The Good Law Project reveals details of companies offered lucrative contracts based on personal networks rather than competence in the chosen industry. If you are to shrug and say “so what” to this, these contracts were for PPE. This means that people will have died unnecessarily because of faulty selection procedures. You may well say that the pandemic demanded a speedy response. Well the speediest response would have been to select companies with the capacity and competence to make the products rather than novices.

My own MP Mr Rehman Chishti is under investigation for having his hand in the till over property development scandals. You can help by reporting him to the bar council.

We have still not found the identity of the Tory rapist. Is this an example for our children to look up to?

It now seems that our children are to sing a Soviet styles song in school to unite the country. I have a better suggestion – see the song below

OBON
Ignorance is strength – Post Brexit education syllabus

I could go on but I won’t. All this in just five years … and we’ve only just begun …

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Cross Party Alliances

Paul Bowers, our parliamentary lobbyist has produced an excellent letter to promote All-Party Parliamentary action on the EU which we may customise (attached).

We seek to target wobbling Tories as a first tranche and, of course, opposition parties.

Please go to the Google sheet and populate the sheet with details of relevant MPs and add your name if you plan to write to your MP.

Here is the letter to customise:

[Name] MP

House of Commons

London

SW1A 0AA

Dear [MP]

All-Party Parliamentary Group on European Union

I am writing as a constituent to ask you to consider setting up an All-Party Parliamentary Group on the European Union.

[I am a member of {name of activist group}]. I voted Remain in the 2016 referendum, and I have campaigned on the issue ever since.

[Insert personal connection here – In addition, my husband is Estonian; I have fond memories of studying at the Sorbonne; I once ate a croissant … ]

As you know, leaving the EU has damaged the UK’s fishing communities, threatens our farmers and food security, has cost eye-watering sums for financial services, harmed our creative industries, and forced many exporters either to scale down or to relocate. The Government’s encouragement of relocation is as much an admission of failed policy as are its plans to support retraining for farmers. Brexit has also damaged UK democracy, reduced our standing in the world, stigmatised EU nationals, and divided our country.

I believe that membership of the European Union is a necessity for the UK.

However, the response of the major political parties to the result of the 2019 general election risks creating a vicious circle of despair. Many voters wish to rejoin the EU, but feel that this is not possible because politicians are not showing leadership to that end. They feel politically homeless.

If no voice in Parliament even addresses the damage of our loss of membership, nor points out the opportunities presented by new developments within the EU, such as the growth of the green and digital sectors from the ambitious NextGenerationEU recovery and transformation plan, we will not be in a position to take advantage promptly of any opportunity to promote membership that might arise.

According to the APPG Register of 2 June 2021, there are Groups on individual European countries, on Erasmus and on Reuniting Britain Post-Brexit, but not on the EU itself.

As you may know, Article 11 of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement provides that the European Parliament and the UK Parliament may establish a Parliamentary Partnership Assembly “to exchange views on the partnership.”

In its Resolution 2021/2658(RSP) of 28 April 2021, the European Parliament endorsed this, envisaging an Assembly which would monitor implementation of the TCA, and suggesting that its remit include “the right to submit recommendations for areas where improved cooperation could be beneficial for both parties and to take joint initiatives to promote close relations.”

An APPG could support this work, and undertake a number of other roles:

  • Raising awareness of the damage caused by Brexit and the broken promises of Brexiteers
  • Channelling constituents’ views on policies that might reconcile them to EU membership
  • Creating a basis for lobbying within your own party in an effort to shift the leadership towards Rejoin
  • Representing the experiences of EU national constituents and their children
  • Providing scrutiny of the TCA, now that the Government has abolished the Commons Committee on the Future Relationship with the European Union
  • Commissioning research, providing spokespeople to the media and promoting an informed view of the EU, life outside, and the accession process
  • Providing a conduit to Parliament, through external membership, for informed activists
  • Contacting the Conference on the Future of Europe to discuss reforms that might help reconcile UK voters to a future return, and to stay in touch with new developments in the EU

I hope you will consider this suggestion positively, and speak to other Members about the possibility of creating an APPG on the EU. The longer we go on without one, the more glaring the omission, and the harder it will be for politicians to break the silence on this most vital of issues.

Yours sincerely,

[Name]

[Address]

Bad Friday

Bad Friday

Desperate to avoid responsibility for the breakdown of the Good Friday Agreement, Johnson seeks to place the blame on the EU. He and his henchmen describe the EU’s position as “purist” and demand that the EU  show flexibility. As usual, where Brexiteers are involved, matters are not so simple.


During the referendum campaign, the sillier Brexiteer parents made little placards stating “We want WTO” for their children to wave at demonstrations. Except in the case of tariffs, that is precisely what they got. Non-tariff barriers, which include health and safety regulations applicable inter alia to sausages,, have since 1 January 2021 fallen  under WTO rules in trade between UK and the EU.  One of the strongest principles of WTO is non-discrimination between members. If one member ‘relaxes’ rules on one or more products to the advantage of another member, then it must extend the relaxation to all the others. So, if the EU abandons the right to check sausages and other processed meats brought into Northern Ireland from Britain, it is bound to do so for the US, Mexico and other WTO members exporting meats such as sausages. The EU negotiators therefore have practical grounds for rejecting  the UK demand, to protect their single market.


It is in fact the British government which is open to the accusation of being unreasonably purist, by refusing to align with EU food standards. For over 40 years we have lived comfortably with these standards – and indeed  helped to draw many of them up. Now we refuse to solve the Northern Ireland problem by aligning because “it would compromise our sovereignty”. This is dogmatic bigotry. If Johnson and his regime stick to it at the expense of the Good Friday Agreement, any resultant bloodshed will be on their heads, and theirs alone.

By Adrian Ekins-Daukes