May is actually correct when she says that there is no “binary choice” between hard or soft Brexit. Because both those concepts are, not features of the process of quitting the EU, but notions devised by her party’s spin-quacks and eagerly seized upon by the British media. There is no ‘hard’ or ‘soft’ Brexit. There is only Brexit.
Neither is there choice. Notwithstanding the frantic efforts to portray the UK Government as being in control, it has no options. The nature of of Brexit will be determined entirely by the EU. And it will not be soft. Realpolitik dictates that it will be as hard as the EU can make it without doing harm to the economies of the remaining members states such as cannot be made tolerable with a range of sweeteners.
Hence May’s new tactic. Having clumsily created the “binary choice” of hard/soft Brexit, she now seeks to disown it. She wants to distance herself from that “binary choice” because she realises that when the media comes to describing the settlement imposed by the EU, they will have little choice about which of those terms to use. Even the Tories’ most blindly loyal devotees will be forced to acknowledge how hard that ‘deal’ is.
So May has now been advised to prepare the ground for a classic political fudge. First create a fog of confusion about what defines success. Then present the outcome as if it falls somewhere towards the pink unicorn end of the contrived spectrum; where ominous clouds are candy-floss, portentous gloom is ambience, and the light at the end of that Stygian tunnel isn’t an oncoming train full of very bad things.
Will people be fooled? Of course they will!! Or, at least, enough of them will choose to believe to ensure the British state gets away with it again. Brexit will be pretty horrendous. But the British establishment has got away with far worse.Views: 3740
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