Andrew Dickens: The 'Disunited' Kingdom faces an uncertain future

Author
Andrew Dickens,
Section
Opinion,
Publish Date
Thursday, 13 December 2018, 12:18PM
Ask most Brits if they understand the backstop and they wouldn’t have a clue. Photo / Getty Images

So I woke up this morning and turned on my computer to check the news and my news agglomerator had this headline: Is Britain about to get a new PM?

My instant response was who cares who the Prime Minister of Britain is. Because whoever it is is a lame duck.

It’s something that’s been bugging me for months as I hear correspondent after correspondent opining whether Theresa May will keep her job ignoring the underlying issue which is what will happen to Britain come March.

The two and a half year Brexit schemozzle and it’s coverage by the media has shown just how dumbed down the world is when it comes to debating complex issues. It all started right from the initial referendum which boiled it all down to two words. Remain or Leave. Even these two words had opponents. One school of thought was that the words should have been Leave or Stay. After all how many people tell their dog to remain. Some argue that the wimpyness of the word Remain was just one of many factors that nobbled the pro-Europeans.

What followed was a debate of slogans peppered by alternative facts and loaded with reckons rather than facts. And then by a narrow margin the vote came down to leave.

What then failed to come to pass was the political entities representing the leavers standing up and following through with vote.

What actually came to pass was a remainer inheriting the mantle of power. Theresa May then negotiated with the EU in a way that was representative of the nation. The remainers have to concede that Britain is leaving. But the leavers also have to recognise that half the country doesn’t want to go. A middle way forward had to be found. Both parties refused to do so and here we are.

The sticking point is the Ireland issue. What amazes me is how few people mentioned the issue at the time. A bit of research will find only a few opinion writers who recognised it. One at the time said that a hard border in Ireland will result in the destruction of the Good Friday Agreement , the agreement that ended the troubles.  This week John Major railed against the stupidity of no backstop reminding everyone that the troubles in Ireland started after the murder of a customs official on the border.

But ask most Brits if they understand the backstop and they wouldn’t have a clue. All they’ve heard is that Theresa Mays deal is too soft.

But the repercussions of a hard border could see a rise in the move towards devolution. Scotland has an out clause and at this rate may choose to leave the Union to join Europe. It seems logical that the move towards wresting sovereignty from a European Union could cause a move towards claiming sovereignty within the Home Unions. The United Kingdom faces becoming 4 countries rather than one

The thing about negotiations is the swallowing of rats. Nobody in the United Kingdom seem prepared to swallow any rats and they seem more concerned about their personal power than their nation. Good luck to them because at this rate they’re heading towards a very hard landing indeed.

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