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Author Archives: Peter Cook

About Peter Cook

When I was five years old, I wanted to be in The Beatles, but all the jobs were taken … By the age of 12, I wanted to be a scientist and I became one. At the age of 18 I took a job with a philanthropic pharmaceutical company, working around the world and developing the first human insulin, novel medicines for herpes and to bring the first HIV / AIDS treatment to the world in record time. This means that I bring a scientific mind, curiosity and rigour to your enterprise. By the age of 30 I had developed an interest in business leadership and began teaching MBA programmes, having completed 3.5 degrees myself. At 34, I took myself out of a paid job and, for the last 28 years, I have worked independently as a consultant, author and speaker with people at all levels all over the world, helping them to transform their enterprises. My clients seek to balance their passions, purposes and profit for a more responsible and sustainable form of capitalism in the 4th industrial age. I also help leaders digest what we call "wicked problems and opportunities", in other words, the issues that keep them awake at night, using a unique mixture of divergent and convergent thinking skills. My 28 years of consultancy experience bring a wealth of expertise and wisdom to you, in enterprises as diverse as Unilever to the United Nations. Along the way, I have written 12 books on leadership, innovation and creativity, gaining a prize for my work from Sir Richard Branson and various accolades from Professors Charles Handy, Adrian Furnham, Tom Peters et al. Over some 50 years, I have gradually combined my three passions of science, business and music into a potent mixture which reaches the head, heart and soul of your enterprise. In combination, your enterprise benefits from rigour, analytics and curiosity due to my science and business background, plus the emotional intelligence, creativity and improvisation skills that come from my life as a music composer and producer. As a musician I have been privileged to interview world class musicians such as Roberta Flack, John Mayall, AC / DC, members of Prince’s ensembles, Queen's production team and Meatloaf's singing partners for their insights into leadership, innovation and success. I am a passionate advocate for better politics and better business for a better world, fighting populist politicians and short-termism in our global affairs. I am an "HR" person, i.e. a "Hippy Realist": green by ideals, but pragmatic by actions to change the world towards more sustainable behaviour.
Marc Jarrett

My Brexit journey

This from Marc Jarrett – an entrepreneur, people connector and Remainer who wrote this shortly after he fraudulent referendum. Mark now connects people with their passions, projects and profits. Get in touch via Marc Jarrett.

Marc Jarrett. The connection alchemist. Click image to connect with Marc.

My overwhelming emotion on the morning of Friday June 24th when David Dimbleby announced ‘we’re out’ was one of sadness.  After all, whether I liked it or not, I am a hardwired European by virtue of my Father who, like Nigel Farage, elected to marry a German national.  And liked it I did.

Unfortunately, my parent’s union did not last which resulted in my Mother returning to her native Fatherland when I was 7.  I started travelling as an unaccompanied minor between the two countries, spending my time either in the sedate beauty of the Hertfordshire countryside in what was then Broken Britain, or in the brand new shiny modern metropolis of Düsseldorf. The contrast was striking.

Apart from attending an American School in Düsseldorf in 1973, my schooling was in England where I went to several state schools.  Aged 11, I was sent to a boarding school in North Norfolk which was to become my new home for the next five years or so.

Back then, the second world war had not been all that long ago and anti-German sentiment was still relatively high.  To this end, I distinctly remember trying to keep my German side private, for fear of being called a Nazi.

However, when in Germany and conversing with Germans who learnt I was half English, I always found the reception I got was far more favourable.  It’s as if they were grateful to be speaking with an Englishman who accepted them.

In my thirties, moved to a small village called Blankenese on the outskirts of Hamburg where the love of all things British was arguably far greater than within Britain itself.  Competition for the apartment was fierce, and I managed to secure it on account of the landlord being an Anglophile.  You see, many Germans love the [still, just] United Kingdom and all things British. 

Let’s remove a Brexit Tory in 2024

In the early nineties, I found myself to be an enthusiastic proponent of the European project.  After having spent countless hours waiting at border control in Netherlands, France and elsewhere, I rather liked the idea of free movement throughout all of Europe.  I was sold. .

I was dating a MP’s daughter at the time who was kind enough to invite me to the public gallery on the evening that the Maastricht Treaty was ratified.  All the top brass were there, and it was fascinating to be at the seat of power on such an historical day.

Over time, I detected less anti-German sentiment this side of the channel and subsequently became less inhibited about my German heritage.  On the contrary, I was proud – Germany had become Europe’s economic powerhouse.  Plus I love German cars and the fact that there are no speed limits there!

Germany’s hosting of the 2006 FIFA World Cup was a turning point for me since I knew that many Brits visiting the tournament would not have normally have elected to go there.   But when they came back, many observed how friendly their hosts were and what a beautiful country is was.  From this point forward, I would no longer hide my German side – on the contrary, I would embrace it.

A decade later, the British electorate decided that the European project was not such a good idea after all.  Perhaps unsurprisingly, given my intrinsic European credentials, I voted remain.

But I totally ‘get’ some of the arguments that the other side made – the bloated bureaucracy, unelected officials, and the fact that Great Britain has always been an outwardly looking global trading nation.

In the meantime, however, we have to live with Brexit and all its unforeseen consequences. Editor’s note : in 2023 : Brexit’s Breaking Britain.

Read Brexit Freedoms

Broken English

In recent years, I have been helping North American SME’s make UK their European home.  It was an easy pitch: Business friendly, same language, and access to the world’s largest trading bloc.

Now that the UK is not such an attractive proposition, I will be helping UK & US SME’s establish a subsidiary in, you guessed it, Germany.  This allows them to structure their affairs in such a way that they do not actually leave the European Union at all and can continue trading freely with the remaining 27 members.

I really hope that the Britain envisioned by those than wanted us to leave comes to pass, but I think it will take a while to get there.  In the meantime, we are left pondering if the Le Touquet treaty will hold.

Now, where’s my German passport?

A song I wrote for all Citizens of Nowhere.
The bard of Barking speaks.
Posted in Borders, Education | Tagged , | Leave a reply
True and Fair

Economy, Education, Environment

Please read the policy document on the 3Es from Gina Miller’s True and Fair party. Economy, Education, Environment. If we wish to change the state of our country and our politics, we need different and not more of the same. This first report concerns the economy, the main battleground for the forthcoming General Election. Not all political parties are the same although I understand why some would think so. We must expect better from our politics and politicians. To help Gina win in Epsom and Ewell, please go to the True and Fair website.

Gina Miller's policy toplines
Gina Miller’s policy toplines.

The full policy document demands full reading. It’s excellent and I cannot convey a good sense of it here. People like to read stuff in a few seconds, but this REALLY needs your time. To whet your appetite, here I include six of the best. Make sure you eat the full meal.

  1. A root and branch reform of taxation in the UK. By the next General Election, taxes will take 37% of our income.
  2. An end to Brexit which has acted to reduce UK plc resilience with no collateral ‘sunny uplands’ in sight. Brexit is costing the UK £100bn a year – it is the economic equivalent of trying to swim the English Channel with a block of concrete around your neck and feet.
  3. Bounce back loans to be written off for the three million people excluded from support during the pandemic.
  4. Revitalise the high street through a series of measures from fairer business rates, seed funding for SMEs and community hubs.
  5. Provide greater access to funding training, and networking opportunities for female entrepreneurs.
  6. Double free childcare hours for low-income families. Introduce High Street childcare hubs and joint child and elderly hubs.

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The only clear position on Brexit from a political party in England.

Sunackered

Sunakered

Read David Cameron

Read Tectonic Plates

European Movement

Breaking the law

For over two years I have tried to reach a negotiated settlement with The European Movement (EM) on their failure to pay agreed expenses for my attendance at the Reading Festival. People who know little or nothing about the matter often tut at me for daring to challenge EM, saying that ‘the Rejoin movement is more important than any one person’. However, this does not excuse anyone for breaking the law. For the lengthy background to this matter see Political Censorship. It’s a complex affair. I am now left with no option but to take them to court. I have written to Mike Galsworthy and the new CEO Sir Nick Harvey on several occasions in 2023 to offer them a way out of this. Here’s one of the letters. I had hoped that Mike would take the easy way out but he did not.

Mike Galsworthy

One of the letters to Mike Galsworthy. There have been several. Click to read the detail.

I took EM to court in November 2022 and offered to write off the administration costs and settle for the court fees of £50. The President stated that he was not authorised to pay £50 to settle the matter. This enraged the Judge who referred it up to a higher court, wasting considerable time and energy. I must assume that the President was under orders from then CEO Anna Bird, not to settle under any conditions, even for 50 quid!! This is not the first time that the youth branch of EM have conducted their business affairs incorrectly. On investigation, it turns out that they were nearly struck off by HMRC for not submitting tax returns. I was told by senior members of EM that they had to pay a fine of £2000 for this. We cannot lecture Vote Leave for breaking the law if our own side are also culpable.

European Movement

“Reading-Gate” was left in stasis by Anna Bird, former CEO EM, due to a personal grudge over another matter. I am unable to provide more details here, as it was the subject of an NDA aka gagging order. The matter was was eventually settled after wasting £30 000 of EM members’ money on lawyers. They eventually advised Bird to settle the matter out of court (after taking the money of course!). Reading-Gate was coincident with this matter. A systematic smear campaign was organised by a few EM foot soldiers and some grassroots people in North East for Europe and Leeds for Europe. I believe that the smear campiagn and the nuclear levels of obfuscation by EM were done to discourage me from pursuing the other matter, rather like the Tories who put dead cats in the road to distract people from more important affairs. The entire story of the smear campaign and Reading-Gate can be found at Political Censorship. We return to court on January 25th 2024 unless common sense prevails and EM get in touch. Perhaps they will call Esther McVey for some advice on common sense?

Lord Adonis
The illiberal left.

I fully expect to get social disapproval by Rejoiners about this article, but frankly I regard the rule of law to be more important than upsetting a few snowflakes. Sorry in advance, but we must not stoop to the level of the Brexiteers in our conduct. Watch this space for updates on the case.

Regards my current role at EM, I remain Chair of The European Movement Mid Kent, although Anna Bird defenestrated me unilaterally without authority. This decision was overturned by the Rt Hon Dominic Grieve KC at a special general meeting. So at this moment, I have the unusual title of Chair of The European Movement Mid Kent (defenestrated). Life is confusing. Frankly I have no care or concern for titles, having worked for 30 years without position power or silly titles. Clearly they matter to some …

Hertfordshire

Hertfordshire for Europe

‘I was delighted to provide a masterclass on Rejoining the EU and preparing the ground to end Brexit via the gentle art and discipline of “Brexorcism” for North Herts for Europe. Here are the video recordings of both sessions if you missed it.

Brexorcise a friend today.

A great set of questions and reflections.

Follow North Herts for Europe on Twitter to get updates on events.

Get our books on Brexorcism via books:

Books
Books to change minds on Brexit and Europe.

Read Cameron

Read Faulty Towers

Read Private Eyelines

True and Fair

A Fresh Start

I have been speaking with Alan Meekings on what he calls a Fresh Start, quite like Reboot Britain and very much in synch with Gina Miller’s True and Fair Party. Alan is an eminent management consultant and systemic thinker. We both plan to stand candidates for election to shake the foundations of our tired Westminster politics if people will support us. I articulated some of the thinking in these articles. Click to read more:

From Miami

In Spanish

In Italian

With thanks to Dennis Pitocco in the USA at Business Catalyst 360, Monica del Pilar Uribe Marin at The Prisma Anglo Spanish Magazine and Paolo Bolzoni at Linkedin for publishing these articles and helping us reach outside the bubble.

If you want to make a fresh start on our broken politics, please support this unusual project to ensure an end to Tory Brexit fascism:

Support a cat for election in Kent

Cats Against Brexit
Cats v. Sunak.

Alan Meekings, systems thinker and founder of Landmark Consulting sums the need for a Fresh Start in our electoral system:

“The present system [FPTP] has clearly broken down. The results produced are not fair to any party, nor to any section of the community. In many cases they do not secure majority representation, nor do they secure an intelligent representation of minorities. All they secure is fluke representation, freak representation, capricious representation.”

Last night’s landmark decision on giving justice to those affected by the infected blood disaster shows that good can prevail over evil if people stand up to bullies. We will also see the same level of courage in facing down this Government’s intent to send people fleeing from war to Rwanda.

Sky News
Things can change if enough of us demand it. I’m delighted that my MP voted against those who would vote to kill children.

The Prisma
Join Gina Miller’s True and Fair party today for a Fresh Start. Click on the bus to support her.
Ursula von der Leyen

Tectonic plates

Change in politics happens when all the ‘tectonic plates’ move in unison. So, what ‘underground movements’ have been happening in the area of Brexit? I’ve picked out some ‘geopolitical seismic effects’ to consider, both internally within Westmonster and in the external environment. Cameron, Sunak, von der Leyen, Curtice, Starmer, Balls, The Tory party and others. The ground is shifting under our feet. Let’s begin with our most surprising appointment.

I have already set out my thoughts on David Cameron in an article for Scottish Bylines. Suffice to say that we must act on Cameron, even if it requires us to hold our noses. David has already made some warm noises about the EU and has executive power to act as he is outside the cabinet in his role as an unelected Lord. Please don’t waste your or my time writing to me on Facebook about pig f..cking and Cameron’s rapid departure after he lost the referendum. Use the opportunity afforded by this unexpected development. Cameron’s next adventure will be to go to Brussels. Let’s see what he does there …

Bylines Scotland
Click to read more on Cameron.
Read “Did Austerity Cause Brexit?’

Surveys on the here and now cannot tell us what leaders can do inductively to change things. But they do offer us cold facts. Professor John Curtice has reminded us that Keir Starmer can win an election whilst mentioning the B word. Watch his analysis here:

Labour Leave voters are now overwhelmingly pro-rejoin. Keir Starmer is living in the past. Cameron is ahead of the curve.

Keir Starmer falls prey to what I call management by focus groups, when he should be in the business of leadership with a bold vision on Brexit. Focus groups are like trying to drive by spending all your time looking through the rear view mirror. Read more on Labour’s faulty plan for rejoining the EU below.

Read Faulty Towers

Ursula von der Leyen confirmed (again) that the door is still open for Britain to join the EU anew. Of course Rishi Sunak has to say no in public, in case the ERG set their attack dogs on him. But it is now clear that he has abandoned the far right and pivoted towards the centre to limit the damage to his party for an election. A sure sign that this has rattled a few swivel headed far right loons comes from The Soaraway Sun, who, of course, have adopted the Daily Mail’s ‘F word’ i.e. FURY !!!

The Sun
To read our book Private Eyelines, which satirises the Sun, Maul and Excess, click the image.

Even the odious James Cleverly has suggested that we will not be leaving the ECHR and I suspect that Suella Braverman’s Stop the Boats campaign will be put into dry dock. This aligns well with the recent polling data which suggests that the vast majority of British people do not like the unsavoury spectacle of seeing migrants sent to concentration camps. The Rwanda fiasco was entirely invented by Braverman and amplified by the right wing media, just like Brexit, to feed feeble minds with red meat.

Not so Cleverly
Read The Guardian article.

It matters that von der Leyen said this, mainly because I get remoaners telling me that we can never rejoin on Facebook almost daily. As Gina Miller points out, the only missing ingredient to end Brexit is political will. Here’s an example of someone who accepts the status quo below. I spend more time doing ‘therapy’ with remoaners who have ‘learned helplessness’ than dealing with the people outside the bubble. It’s exhausting and a waste of everyone’s time. Our main job is to Brexorcise the nation in readiness for an eventual drift towards joining anew.

Cats Against Brexit Mayhem
Rick has learned helplessness. Don’t be like Rick.

Rachel Wolf, who co-wrote the Conservatives’ 2019 Tory manifesto has said that The UK could rejoin the European Union ‘in some form’ as a result of shifting geopolitical fault lines and changing attitudes among Brits (sounds like a load of hyperbole / BS, but they need a different reason to avoid saying that Brexit is an utter mess!). So now, even the Tory party are actively talking about undoing Brexit. Keir Starmer is very late to the party …

Shortly after David Cameron started making small moves in foreign policy, Keir Starmer responded with what management consultants call a ‘symbolic intervention’. He said the piece of music that best “sums up” the Labour party party is Beethoven’s Ode to Joy. Speaking to Classic FM, he said the symphony had a “sense of destiny and is hugely optimistic … it’s that sense of moving forward to a better place”. It may be a coded message about Rejoining the EU but it’s not sufficient. Starmer is more than able to point to a vast amount of evidence that shows that Brexit isn’t working. He need not finish the sentence by saying that we must join anew. That would be taken as read. Like it or not, the next General Election will be fought on the ‘offspring of Brexit’, as depicted by our Brexit iceberg:

The Brexit Iceberg
The Brexit Iceberg. All the visible symptom have their roots wholly or partly in Brexit.

Ed Balls has insisted that Labour needs to start talking about Brexit now. He wants ‘a proper structured-with-metrics conversation about what we’re going to do to get to a better relationship’ with the EU.

Ian Collard reports that even the Lib Dems are making soft noises to Ed Davey about needing to be harder on Rejoining the EU.

George Smid reports that even The Torygraph are having the collywobbles on Brexit:

When you consider these collateral moves, it becomes obvious that (a) the Brexit question is not settled (b) Labour are lagging behind in the conversation (c) events will overtake them if they are not careful and (d) The Tories are now desperate to find ways to limit the damage from an election. Brexit is the turd that just wont flush ….

Brexshit
Brexshit – the stinky turd that won’t flush …

Read other articles from the vault:

12 Angry Tories

Jonty Bloom

Mass Brexorcisms

Food fighters

Bollocks to Brexit Mini

This week’s homework

Don Adamson sets out this week’s homework in his weekly digest. Better than the David Davis Dossier.

One – Discuss the following statement. Events in Ukraine have made changes. Russia has reverted to a dangerous foreign policy. You wonder what they will do next. Similarly we are faced with the prospect of a second Trump Presidency. Obama said the USA might survive four years of Trump as President. Eight years might be another matter. It is difficult to identify circumstances that more clearly demonstrate the need for a united and economically sound EU.  Countries within the EU want to expand and countries outside the EU see strong incentives to join. I would not blame the EU for resenting the nonsense they had to take from mad, bad and dangerous British politicians (not all of them Tory). Brexit has done a huge amount of damage to Britain and, to a lesser extent, to other countries in the EU. There are powerful incentives to Rejoin. Will British politicians have the brains, courage and decency to admit it? 

The only clear position on Brexit from a political party in England.

Two – Discuss the following statement. For 500 years the main plank of British foreign policy was to prevent Europe from uniting against us. Tories managed in just a few years.

Three – Discuss the following statement. Rory Stewart, Hero of the Resistance to Brexit appears on TV documentaries because he is an acknowledged expert on Roman History in general and Julius Caesar in particular. Meanwhile Nigel Garbage appears on ‘I’m a Celebrity – get me out of here.’ By what stretch of a demented imagination is Nigel Garbage and Brexit anything to do with realism? 

Four – The Greeks are determined to regain the Elgin Marbles. Sooner or later this country will return to its senses and Rejoin the EU. Will the Greeks be justified in insisting that return of the Elgin Marbles should be the price we ought to pay? Can you think of other examples? 

Marble madness.

Five – There has not been enough rain to replenish the reservoirs that store the water that allow the Panama Canal to operate. Ordinarily 40 ships per day pass through the Panama Canal. There is only enough water to allow 18 or 20 ships a day through the Panama Canal. Climate Change deniers insist that the insufficient rain is nothing to do with climate change. Why then is there insufficient rain to replenish the reservoirs; is it a) all part of some dastardly plot to cause Britain to Rejoin the EU? b) All part of some dastardly plot to keep Trump out of the White House? c) All part of some dastardly plot to force people to vaccinate their children against diseases? d) Other explanation? 

… Scumbag’s political strategy is pure Micawberism – hope that something will turn up. Whatever does turn up is unlikely to be good for the Tories … forecasts for the remaining 15 months of this parliament do not suggest a big economic pay off to delay … nasty mortgage rate increase … higher unemployment …  Scumbag faces a tough choice … going for an early election when Tories are more than 20% behind in the polls seems foolhardy … longer he delays more that mortgage holders (bedrock of Tory support) will get clobbered … Things ended well for Micawber … went to Australia … Scumbag is known to like California … 

… as with Brexit, those in public office appear reluctant to state the facts or obvious conclusions … Braverman as a practicing Buddhist? Two central tenets of Buddhism are compassion and wisdom. Braverman needs to practice much harder … increasingly unhinged and uncontrollable … If I had anything to do with the Met I would be feeling aggrieved; the force has bent itself into all sorts of weird shapes to avoid inconveniencing this government from declining to investigate criminal irregularities in the Leave campaign … to turning a blind eye to No 10 becoming party central during lockdown … how were they rewarded? … Tory Home Secretary wrote an op-ed accusing them of bias, wokery and going easy on lefties … Cruella  took innovative step … to whip up a mob of battle gammons ‘to defend the honour of our war dead’ i.e. get coked and lagered up and lay into coppers actually protecting the Cenotaph… Met must be wondering what it will take to get a fair deal from this government … arrest their political opponents? Braverman’s Brownshirts briefly buoyed up by presence of Stickyfinger Pansey-Lenin alias ‘Tommy Robinson’ … he squeaked some words of encouragement before jumping into a taxi when things got violent … Cruella omitted to mention that half the injuries had been inflicted not by the pro-ceasefire marchers but by the beery denizens of the counter protests that she had instigated.

… shop will close next month as a result of government inaction … a result of Brexit and 13 years of austerity … a flock of sheep continuing to support a corrupt and moribund government… Cameron is taking over as Foreign Secretary … he has much to to, having irreparably damaged our relationship with our closest allies … reduced us to an international laughing stock… Same people behind Brexit backed ‘anti-woke’ candidates … election to National Trust Council … record turnout of members wanted nothing to do with  it … All five of candidates recommended by nominations committee were voted in …

… question posed Leicester Square Theatre on 21 November…. Alex Salmond … Gina Miller … Andrew Marr against a team led by David Davis, Claire “IRA” Fox and Mike Graham of Talk Shit TV … John Bercow says ‘pity the debate cannot be in mainstream politics’ … 

Read The Ayes Have It

… provocations of the sacked Home Secretary Cruella Braverman, Stickyfinger Pansey-Lenin alias ‘Tommy Robinson’ and the tawdry culture war that the real war has ignited…

…Business Leaders … insight into current attitudes to a united Ireland … ‘We look north to the stalemate in Belfast and see a basket case, we look east to London and see a bigger basket case’ … it is hard to overestimate the damage we have done to ourselves … combination of Brexit, … Johnson … Thick Lizzie … Cruella Braverman … people outside Britain take us less and less seriously … Brexit had complicated postal services between UK and Ireland beyond belief … added enormous costs … complexities because of Brexit … we have even had to send back cremated ashes … amazed that there is not more of a fuss in the UK media and politics about the damage Brexit has done … most UK newspapers do not allow facts into the Brexit debate … madness, utter madness … 

… real figures what that UK exports to EU fallen by 7.2% … to the rest of the world by 9.8% … something seriously wrong with UK Trade … problems correspond with arrival of Brexit … Business and Trade Secretary  Kemi Badenoch … has access to rooms full of experts, analysts, statistician and economists … she consults none of them because they tell her what she does not want to hear … trumpeting one single think tank discredited after involvement with Thick Lizzie’s disaster … do not bother trying to explain this … 

… a snake in the jungle … I’m a celebrity get me out of here … Nigel Garbage on the show shows how insensitive, crass, tone deaf, idiot, provocative, morally bankrupt ITV is … history not on his side … Mad Halfcock’s campmates did a better job of expressing their views than most professional politicians did … did not help book sales or job prospects … Nigel Garbage is a coward who likes money, attention and the sound of his own voice … always a lot less than he appears to be … notoriously peevish and thin skinned … unlikely to keep up his act on TV … politicians on the brink of success do not volunteer for reality TV.

Nigel’s end game in a bunker.

… She did not get it … but there was a confrontation at the Cenotaph led by a few hundred tanked up fans of Stickyfinger Pansey-Lenin (Alias Tommy Robinson) … police said ‘Palestine Solidarity Campaign did not see the sort of violence carried out by the right wingers’ …

Read Cleaning up Politics

…  ethnically questionable lobbyist … recently taking Chinese money … Beijing’s ‘useful idiots’ … going to the Lords means he can skip angry encounters with Gammonite MPs … 

Read Lord Cameron on Scottish Bylines

… return of far right pinups … Stickyfinger Pansey-Lenin (alias Tommy Robinson) Hatie Katie Hopkins … Pandora’s box is opened … 

… crazed conspiracy theorist … the only way this book could be more mind bending would be if the pages were soaked in LSD … Gove is an incorrigible plotter … Cummings did decide Johnson was a lemon … incomprehensible … desperate attempt to avoid the trauma of admitting Brexit is a damp squib and that Johnson failed as PM … Gove stabbed you in the back to cut you down to size … if Go Nads gets rained on she looks at the sky and says ‘Coincidence! I think not.’… Johnson has never taken money … that is not even the book’s most absurd quote … Tory Party is a viper’s nest of ruthless infighting and overweening ambition … politicians who are entirely dishonourable …

… we went into the pandemic 24th out of 38 in the league table of avoidable deaths … we had worse resourced and staffed health service, eye watering inequality … dismal public health … no plan to ramp up figures … not enough PPE for front line workers … we predicted social meltdown but did little to plan for it … Winston Churchill and Nye Bevan would have struggled with this … instead we go Johnson and Mad Halfcock … leaders … disliked, disrespected and distrusted each other … ‘c*nts, tw*ts, f*uckpigs, incompetents and liars’ … Johnson agreed with Tory view that ‘Covid was nature’s way of dealing with old people’ … ‘let the bodies pile high’ …. comments corroborated by Johnson’s chief of staff …; witness after witness detailed how incompetent Tories were … Mad Halfcock believe he not doctors should decide who should live or die … next time we might have a different virus but similarly dysfunctional political leadership … harm everybody except vaccine manufacturers or sellers of dodgy PPE or mass testing contracts …

Pip Pip Don Adamson Brexorcist in Chief – First Class with Honours

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John Bercow

The Ayes Have It

I attended ‘The Ayes Have It’, led by former Commons Speaker John Bercow last week. The event debated the motion “Brexit has been a disaster and now must be reversed”. The motion was won with a substantial majority. Here is my review:

The panel for the motion consisted of heavyweight contributors Alex Salmond, Gina Miller and Andrew Marr. In contrast, the opposition panel comprised David Davis, plus C-listers Mike Graham and Claire Fox. No Nigel Farage, Mogg, Tice, Baker, Johnson, Andrew Pierce, or anyone of significance on the leave side. Just David Davis, who turned out to be the most gracious member of the opposition panel.

Salmond, Miller and Marr offered solid complementary arguments backed up by relevant facts. Some highlights: Gina pointed out that Brexit had delivered the exact economic hit to UK plc as predicted by various experts (ranging up to a 5% hit on GDP). My own analogy for this is to imagine trying to swim the channel with a 4.5 kg block of concrete around your neck. All the ‘offspring of Brexit’ are on show for the next General Election, although none of the main parties wish to utter ‘he who shall not be named’ (Brexit).

The Brexit Iceberg
All of the ‘offspring’ of Brexit remain issues for the election.

Alex Salmond was an excellent orator and held himself in good account, despite numerous personal attacks by the Brexit panelists. Andrew Marr focused on our place in the world after Brexit. In summary, he pointed out that we don’t have a place in the world after Brexit. However, he did not think that he would see us rejoin in his lifetime. Gina and I disagree on Marr’s point. All that is needed is political will in Westminster and the cultivation of better relations with the EU. David Cameron may well be an asset in this respect if we play the ball and not the man. Please read our separate article on Cameron and his potential contribution to the breaking of Parliamentary paralysis.

In direct comparison, the Leave panel avoided any factual analysis of the benefits of Brexit (there are none of course). Only Sugar magnate David Davis presented any serious evaluation of Brexit, although he offered no benefits. But Davis generally acted with some dignity compared with the other leave panelists. He stated that Remoaners all think that the EU is perfect. I certainly know that all political systems imperfect. The question is really one of “Go Compare” and our own Parliament earns the prize of being twinned with Belarus, North Korea and Nigeria. Davis also installed his own versions of ‘project fear’ into the debate, suggesting that:

  • Rejoining would be difficult (so was Brexit, lots of important things are difficult David);
  • That the EU had moved on (self evident) and;
  • That we would have to have the Euro and cede sovereignty (utter bollocks).

See my separate articles on Michel Barnier and Myths and Riffs of Brexit for Bylines re these points.

Mike ‘Talk Shit TV’ Graham and Claire Fox were notable because neither of them even tried to oppose the motion. Instead they hurled insults at the other panelists. Claire ‘IRA’ Fox attempted to set up a class war by saying that Gina, Andrew and Alex were all the products of public school and that only she (Baroness Fox) was a supporter of the common man and woman. She forgot to mention that the vast majority of the Brexiteers went to public school (Johnson, Mogg, the list goes on). She also said that if we rejoined the EU, Britain would become ‘Greece’. This is so much bollocks that I won’t even comment further. Graham had been encouraged by his supporters to ‘assassinate Gina’ and ‘use lots of facts’. In fact, Graham said he had decided not to use ANY facts as the Remoaners would dispute them. Clearly this was because he had none to offer. Graham also ran away before questions could be asked. These are the typical behaviours of a Brexit coward. A pound shop Alan Partridge.

After the interval, two year 6 students from Chestnut Grove Academy from spoke for each side of the debate. Both were nervous. Cora spoke for Rejoin made some terrific points about having her future taken away by people who would not live to see the damage they had done (my emphasis, not hers). She supplemented her talk with plenty of salient facts. The strangest thing happened when the young man (Dominic) stood up for the Brexit side. The first thing he said was that he could not defend Brexit !! Then he appeared to break down, unable to speak. John Bercow helped Dom to continue but his speech was incoherent. His main point was that we could not go back on the past, that Brexit was done (It’s far from done of course). At the end Dom attempted to give a benefit of Brexit mentioning the idea that we were able to get the COVID vaccine faster because of Brexit. Of course this is incorrect. Check the Full Fact link on this. I discussed this point later on with David Davis on a 1:1 basis. He tried to suggest that the EU was slow to respond and I agreed that entropy is a feature of all large institutions. Both of us have MBAs and have worked for large organisations and I found common cause with David who did not try to pull any strokes with me on the matter. But the point here is that UK was not prevented from acting independently. It’s a legal point and not an Organisational Behaviour issue. David graciously agreed with me. Boris Johnson was desperate to produce a smokescreen for Brexit at the time and it was a convenient story to fool the public with. Some still are fooled by Johnson’s lies.

COVID and Brexit
Click to read the article.

For ‘balance’, other reviews are available. Jonathan Baz must have been taking some of Liz Truss’ psychotropic drugs in his review where he describes Claire Fox as using facts to destroy the Remoaners. Check Everything Theatre for a more sober review of the evening. Well done to theatre director and former MP Tasmina Ahmed-Sheikh who put this all together.

From Everything Theatre.

I was delighted to present John Bercow and Alex Salmond with copies of my Brexit Satire book ‘Private Eyelines – Have I got fake Brexit news for EU‘. Ian Hislop also has a copy. It makes a great gift. Do NOT buy on Amazon by the way. Direct sales offer the best value.

John Bercow
ORDER … a copy of Private Eyelines direct from the author – click the picture.
John Bercow
What a gentleman. Oh Bercow oh !!

Fuck Brexit

Protest and Survive the Tories

Check out our latest article for The Prisma Anglo-Spanish newspaper on the art of protest here. Here’s a taster:

On a cold day in March 2017, I had heard that a few people were planning to gather on the street opposite No 10 Downing Street. I decided to set aside my business activities and cycled into town from South London. En route, I got a puncture just by Bermondsey tube station, some 6 km from my destination. I was in the midst of fixing the tyre when a woman approached asking if I needed any help. It turned out as if by magic that we were both going to No 10. That woman was Wendy Novak, ex BBC photographer and a constant protestor for vulnerable people who face medical supply shortages due to Brexit. The group that assembled that cold evening in March became ‘The No 10 Vigil’. Read the full article here.

Fuck Brexit
Fuck Brexit. Click to support our work.
The Prisma
The Prisma.

The crucible of No 10 Vigil was, in effect, a ‘clinical trial’ for much of what became the grass roots movement to Remain in the EU. Groups such as Extinction Rebellion and others clearly learned from our successes and mistakes and were able to add money and discipline to our unfettered creativity.

One of our protest songs, written about the Brexiteer in regret, trapped by his inability to tell his mates that Brexit has failed.

Read 12 angry Tories