Could Prime Minister Boris Johnson break up the UK?

This topic contains 553 replies, has 16 voices, and was last updated by Avatar POPS 32 minutes ago.

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  • #83405 Reply
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    Brydo
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    The Scottish Conservative (and Unionist) party has enjoyed something of resurgence in recent years under the energetic leadership of Ruth Davidson.

    The party’s opponents are convinced that Boris Johnson as prime minister could put an end to all that – and could even put an end to the union between Scotland the rest of the UK.

    It’s true that Mr Johnson could hardly be more different from the down to earth, plain speaking and Remain-voting Ms Davidson. The two are not friends and have vehemently disagreed before.

    Some observers like to speculate that Boris will appear to Scottish voters to be the very epitome of the upper-class English ruling caste that Scots so dislike. But policy may well prove to be more important than personality.

    Mr Johnson appeared to have a weak grasp of the dynamics of devolution when he proposed tax changes that take no account of the fact that income tax rates in Scotland are set by the Scottish Parliament.

    But since then he has promised Scottish Tory MPs he will set up a “union unit” inside No 10 to check every policy. If he knows what he doesn’t know, then maybe he can avoid these gaffes as PM.

    It’s Brexit that may be his undoing, in so many ways. In Remain-voting Scotland, his problem is that the idea of a no deal Brexit is far less palatable than it is in the rest of the UK. The harder the Brexit Boris delivers, the more the Tory party in Scotland could suffer.

    If Prime Minister Johnson [he will officially take on the role this Wednesday] pursues a Brexit policy at odds with what most voters in Scotland would like to see, then it’s possible they may change their minds about whether remaining part of the UK is in their best interests. Some recent polling evidence suggests as many as 60% of voters could vote “yes” to independence if we leave the EU with no deal.

    In the end it may not be the precise details of any Brexit deal that stokes desire for independence – or indeed the character of any individual politician – but a sense that Scotland has different aspirations from the rest of the UK, which can’t be reconciled within the current union.

    If Mr Johnson wants to keep the kingdom united, he will need to take care not fan those flames.

    The only person who got all his work done by Friday was Robinson Crusoe

Viewing 25 replies - 426 through 450 (of 553 total)
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  • #87303 Reply
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    fwipperie
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    I think all sides are slowly boxing themselves into corners where any form of compromise will be seen as weakness. The result being everyone loses, some a little some a lot.

    #87306 Reply
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    POPS
    Moderator

    The EU has had a reality check over the past few months, and is grudgingly acknowledging the damage that a no deal Brexit would do to both the UK and themselves. They really want closure on this with a proper deal or the revoking of article 50.

    At the time of the referendum we had only the faintest of ideas about the outcome of a vote for Brexit, but never the less we went ahead and voted by a majority of approximately 1.2 million to leave.

    Three years later we have a very clear idea about the pro’s and con’s of both leave and remain outcomes, and we also have clear  sight of the lies that were told by both sides during a frenzied and misguided referendum campaign.

    During the last three years the demographics have changed the numbers dramatically. Approximately 600,000 people die in the UK each year and it has been quantified that 480,000 of these deaths would be elderly voters who voted 2 to 1 to leave the EU. At the same time approximately 400,000 young people become eligible to vote each year and many polls have identified that they would be much more likely to vote remain (well over 60% categorically and approx 75% expected).

    The “will of the people” now with the advantage of full knowledge of the consequences would almost certainly be to remain within the EU according to independent polling research.

    I’m not discounting the “will of the people” in 2016 which is why I would support a well drafted leave bill, but I do not believe that a few self seeking egotistical individuals should be able to jeopardise the UK’s future standard of living and prospects by rushing headlong over a ‘No Deal’ cliff with no safety net in place, like a bunch of well off lemmings just to make a political name for themselves.

    My personal views of course, feel free to disagree.

    #87309 Reply
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    callmejohn

    As I think it is clear now, that we either leave without a deal (I agree with wigwam on the EU’s viewpoint) or we stay under currant agreement/rules within the EU.

    Therefor as the politicians have failed to come up with a decision, the only alternative is to go back to the people for an educated vote, which we could not have had the first time.

    As the Brexit organiser said from the audiance on Question Time, “we were not the only people that were telling lies”.

    So as far as I am concerned in my view, the only sollution would be to have another up to date and educated vote, as people vote a goverment in and out every five years or less.

    If the Brexiteers, are right that people still want a Brexit on the no deal option, which is the only option, then that will be reflected and finale in the outcome of the vote.

    However in the other hand, if people who now 3 years later, know the full consequences of leaving the EU, decided that they no longer wanted to leave, then we should not be leaving when the public no longer wish to leave.

    Remembering that once we leave we cannot rejoign without having to adopt the Euro and I do not think many think adopting the Euro would be a good idea. This also goes for Independence for Scotland, that if we got Independence, we would have to join the EU from scratch and adopt the Euro.

    Simply, put it back to the people and abide by the now educated outcome.

    #87318 Reply
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    Brydo
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    Pops, john excellent posts, totally agree with both your posts.

    The one thing I would add is that the result of any new vote should be legally binding.

    The only person who got all his work done by Friday was Robinson Crusoe

    #87322 Reply
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    POPS
    Moderator

    i agree Brydo.

    The first referendum was legally an “advisory” referendum.

    If a second referendum is to be held, all parties must sign up to it being a “legally binding” referendum which will be immediately implemented.

    #87326 Reply
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    Philjb

    I remember being told this would be our one and only chance to get a referendum on staying or leaving the EU.

    Personally I take polls with a pinch of salt.

    In my opinion what will eventually have to happen is a general election with the parties having a clear manifesto of if and how we leave.

    The public votes, the winner hopefully will have a majority of mps so they can then pass whatever new laws and the country can eventually move on.

    It will still take years to get over this mess, David Cameron has so much to answer for.

    Why Boris thought he had a great plan that would please the electorate shutting parliament and forcing a quick deal if possible, I’ll never understand.

    #87329 Reply
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    callmejohn

    Surely a General Election would take in many issues, I for one would never vote for the Conservatives even if I agreed with Boris on his Brexit stratergie.

    I would hate the tories to get back in for another 5 years only on the back of Brexit.

    This whole situation is based on Brexit, we should therefor decide Brexit on a one issue vote and then we can decide how we go forward on a General Election.

    I think if Boris loses the Brexit vote, then he should have to stand in a General Election, however if Boris was to win the Brexit Peoples Vote, then I would imagine he would also win a General Election if it went ahead after the Peoples Vote on Brexit and Boris would be vindicated.

    #87336 Reply
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    fwipperie
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    The big issue for many is not Brexit, but trust & democracy. And for very many there is a complete lack of trust in all politicians. Will a 2nd referendum settle matters? If its another leave vote then perhaps, if its remain, then it will drag on and on. Democracy only works if the losing side accepts the result. That has not happened and millions who voted leave in the referendum, having never voted before, will feel completely disenfranchised if Brexit does not happen. That is potentially very damaging for society, for all of us. I am going to be away for a couple of days but I look forward to catching up on this thread, and, if the weather forecast is as predicted a couple of relaxing days at the coast.

    #87339 Reply
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    Mike 700
    Participant

    Pops, it is clearly unfair and unscientific to make such assumptions , and is typical of the rubbish being promoted by remain campaigners , without a shred of evidence, and it is extremely disappointing that otherwise quite intelligent people are taking this ‘on board’?

    To assume that the older people who have died / will die ,voted to leave and that their children and/ or grandchildren who, In effect, are replacing them, will invariably vote to remain is fantasy.

    Not only is it fantasy, but if you follow it through, then exactly the same situation arises throughout the life of a Parliament , and this fantasy thinking would mean that as the demographics would change even more during a 5 year parliament, we should re- vote every 2-3 years , because of these demographic changes – clear nonsense of course !

    The same applies to the assumption that no deal is a bad thing, also being promoted by remain, whereas the truth is, we do not yet know
    the outcome.

    As an example , remain is promoting that there will be massive delays at the ports due to customs checks, whereas the recently retired guy ( Robert ) in charge of customs in Dover has said categorically that this is absolutely not the case, and that there would be little noticeable change on this side of the tunnel or ports, but there would invariably be some slow down in the European ports – he made it clear that the main issues in a no-deal Brexit will be felt in Europe, saying: “There will be a shortage of cheddar in Carrefore, but there won’t be a shortage of Brie in Tesco.”

    Assumptions are dangerous, especially those based on political viewpoints, for example, some people think of the disabled as inferior, even though they know absolutely nothing about them or their disability – it is assumed that they are not fully au fait with matters, but in reality, they may have a good standard of education, a good degree maybe, perhaps qualified in fields like the law or medicine, or perhaps used to drive a 747 or anything else of note, or they may have suffered all of their lives and not had the opportunities of their detractors, perhaps they had to forgo a chosen career because of disability, or they may have been disabled from serving their country, or they simply may be struggling along every single day as husbands, wives, parents etc., but to some, the disabled are just a nuisance , holding them up at the checkout etc.?

    They don’t know anything of People’s history, or lives, , nor should they, but they shouldn’t just assume that disabled people are half wits, just like Remainers should not assume that leavers are dying off

    #87342 Reply
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    POPS
    Moderator

    I agree that assumptions are dangerous, which is why I quoted factual evidence from interviews and exit polls at the time (with older voters) after the referendum. It was found that over two thirds of older voters voted to leave the EU.

    The figures for the voting intentions of new young voters joining the electoral roll was collated from a large number of face to face interviews with these young people in which two out of every three stated that they would irrevocably vote remain if they had the opportunity. The rest were either committed to vote leave or still making their minds up.

    Pollsters latest predictions are that the 4% margin for vote leave, has now reversed itself and vote remain would currently have at least a 4% majority. I don’t think that this prediction is as reliable though because it refers to a very large body of voters.

    Researchers and pollsters often get things wrong, but the indications are that remain has had a majority just on a demographic basis since January of this year on the basis of changes to the electoral register, so if you add the numbers to people’s stated views it at least gives you a starting point on which to view the possible out come of a second referendum.

    I’d be interested to know what facts you base your thoughts on about a likely outcome Mike?

    #87343 Reply
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    Wigwam
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    Rather than assumptions polls and guesses there is one thing that is certain. Remaining in the EU inevitably means ever closer Union.  If anyone here believes our future is best served by being a member of a technocratic superstate without democratic control of those who run it, then by all means say so.

    #87348 Reply
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    POPS
    Moderator

    I am no longer a fan of an increasingly populist EU, but I am even less of a fan of a No Deal exit, with all it’s inherent dangers.

    I’ve said a number of times that I am in favour of a well drafted leave agreement with the EU.

    I now believe this to be possible because Parliament has been shaken to it’s roots by the horrors of the last few months, and will look to seal a deal on a cross party basis which will sideline the right wing extremists attempting to hijack Brexit. In my opinion the EU is now prepared to move quickly to bring this whole sorry and damaging affair to a swift conclusion.

    There will still be a very lengthy period of detailed negotiations with the EU about trade, security, legal issues etc, after we’ve legally left, but at least then we can carry out these discussions at a measured pace and with due diligence on reasonably equitable terms.

    We will still need Europe and Europe will still need us. We don’t need to be in the EU to work together in the future.

    #87350 Reply
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    Wigwam
    Participant

    I think you have a good point POPS, it’s only once we are out that we can negotiate mutually beneficial arrangements. Which is why I don’t fear a no deal Brexit.

    #87352 Reply
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    Wigwam
    Participant

    Just picking up on your first point POPS, the EU is anything but populist. It’s structure is that of a technocracy where the experts rule regardless of the will of the people. No one asked for lower  powertoasters that take longer to toast bread or kettles that take forever to boil.  The populism that has arisen  in Italy is in reaction to the EU way of ruling as is the Gillet Jeune movement in France. That the EU suppresses these movements says everything to me about where it is heading.

    #87356 Reply
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    Mike 700
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    As I have already stated Pops, far too many assumptions are being made about older voters dying off?

    Polling just shows a snapshot in time, and will / can change daily, and the same applies to Government statistics, but these tend to be more reliable than Opinion Polls!

    Broken down by leave and remain only, not by totals, which include don’t knows etc. – Government statistics on this snapshot, show that 120,000 older assumed ‘leave’ voters have passed on, and altogether it is assumed that leave voters have decreased by some 168000.

    Younger ‘assumed remain’ voters as per those reaching 18 and registering to vote ,have increased by some 176000.

    So, thus far there potentially is a slight increase in remain voters ( 8000 ) and these are the figures/ statistics regularly quoted by remain – figures which can and do vary on a daily basis !

    But, what remain fail to note and supporters either fail to understand, or chose to ignore, is a major point which is also likely to affect any future voting –

    Some 344000 more people were registered to vote in 2016 over 2015, so more electors registered overall in time for the referendum- some say encouraged by Remainers ?

    Then, (funny  this eh,) following the referendum with the job done( but not successfully) things changed, and there were were some 372000 fewer registered electors in 2017/8 over 2016/7 and especially with regard to overseas electors.

    So, at first, it seems that remain voting intentions are increasing over time, and remain supporting newspapers published stats to show that in January this year it was projected / estimated that remain voters would now be in the majority?

    Also, the assumption is that within the age group 18-44 there is a majority to remain
    .
    Whereas within the age group 44 plus there is a majority to leave

    Sounds simple , but unfortunately it’s not ,and this is where the big mistake followed by the big remain con comes in to play –

    People get older and as remain constantly promote the idea that older people vote leave, and as confirmed by the polling companies, ‘in the middle age groups there is likely to be substantial movement ‘, and importantly, as these groups get older, they are more likely to vote leave, so this fact alone could easily wipe out the assumptions over deceased and younger voters- but they are ‘off message’ and these facts are ignored !

    Also, and very importantly –

    Only 40% of 18-24 year old polled are likely to vote ,  thereby reducing the actual younger remain votes – these facts are also ignored!

    Whereas 84-% of 65+ polled will definitely vote, potentially increasing the older Leave votes – these facts are also ignored!

    So, Pops, assumptions are being made on simple stats., but the truth is that things are a lot more complicated than remain like to promote, especially also, that people can and do change their mind ( either way ) or possibly just don’t turn out to vote,  for whatever reason , including protest votes etc etc,.

    So, we simply don’t know what the future holds, and it is dangerous to assume that leave voters are dying off?

     

    Btw I also voted Remain, but Project Fear soon changed my mind!

    .

    #87357 Reply
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    POPS
    Moderator

    I was thinking of countries like Hungary, Poland, Austria, Czech Republic, as well as Italy who have influential far right populist representation. Germany and France also have populist far right groups that are gaining traction and sadly the UK is now run by a populist party.

    The power of veto held by each member country in the group of 27 (26 in the near future?) makes populist leaders much more of a threat.

    I’ve enjoyed the width of debate today, but my aching body tells me it’s time for bed.

    #87358 Reply
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    Mike 700
    Participant

    Surely the U.K. is run by Gina Miller?

    #87359 Reply
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    POPS
    Moderator

    A very detailed and informative post Mike. I’ll read it again after a good night’s sleep (I hope, lol)

    #87360 Reply
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    Brydo
    Participant

    Is it still Project Fear when it comes from a hard brexit right wing Tory Government?

    Impact of no-deal Brexit revealed in Government documents
    By Shaun Connolly, PA Political Correspondent,PA Media: UK News 12 minutes ago

    A no-deal Brexit could trigger major hold-ups at channel ports, electricity price increases, shortages of some foods and delays to medicine imports, Government documents reveal.

    HGV delays of between one-and-a-half and two-and-a-half days would occur at Dover and public disorder could increase, according to Operation Yellowhammer “reasonable worst case planning assumptions” released in response to MPs voting for it to happen.

    The document says: “There are likely to be significant electricity (price) increases for consumers.”

    On food, it warns that some fresh supplies will decrease and that “critical dependencies for the food chain” such as key ingredients “may be in shorter supply”.

    It says these factors would not lead to overall food shortages “but will reduce the availability and choice of products and will increase price, which could impact vulnerable groups”.

    The document also says: “Low-income groups will be disproportionately affected by any price rises in food and fuel.”

    The analysis says the flow of cross-Channel goods could be reduced to 40% of current rates on day one, with “significant disruption lasting up to six months”.

    “Unmitigated, this will have an impact on the supply of medicines and medical supplies,” it says.

    “The reliance of medicines and medical products’ supply chains on the short straits crossing make them particularly vulnerable to severe extended delays.”

    The release of the document came as Prime Minister Boris Johnson was facing furious demands for the immediate recall of MPs to Westminster after the suspension of Parliament was ruled unlawful by Scotland’s highest civil court.

    In a dramatic judgment, the Court of Session in Edinburgh found ministers had stopped MPs from sitting for the “improper purpose of stymying Parliament”.

    https://uk.yahoo.com/news/impact-no-deal-brexit-revealed-192303735.html

    The only person who got all his work done by Friday was Robinson Crusoe

    #87363 Reply
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    Mike 700
    Participant

    These are impact assessments Brydo ‘ worst case scenarios’, painting a picture of doom and disaster, and that is why the Remainers wanted them published , and why the remain media have heavily latched on to them!

    It does not mean that they are fact , just possibilities – they could happen of course, but probably in a trickle rather than a flood!

    In any good business the board will have impact assessments available to cover all eventualities, it is common practice, and I say that as a retired board member.

    The EU as a group, and the individual member states will have exactly the same ‘worst case scenario ‘ assessments as us- we are not unique in this, but political expediency is rife amongst the opponents of Brexit.

    The most important word in the whole of your post my friend is ‘could’!

     

     

    #87365 Reply
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    fwipperie
    Participant

    As  Bernard said to Sir Humphrey in Yes Prime Minister, “anything COULD be true”  response “Excellent Bernard, you’re learning”.

    I need to catch a train soon, might even catch a glimpse of our Houses of Parliament in the cab. Have a good day all.

    #87372 Reply
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    POPS
    Moderator

    Having read the Yellowhammer document, a couple of things spring to mind.

    When Johnson said recently that this was an old and out of date document he was lying. It was produced less than six weeks ago. No wonder he didn’t want the public to see it.

    The contents of the document clearly demonstrate that Johnson and his advisors have no idea of the actual effect of a No Deal exit if it happens in 49 days time.

    Yet they are willing to take a huge gamble on dragging the country into the unknown for the sake of personal and political ambition.

    We have to agree a proper deal to leave the EU and we have to make sure that we safeguard a smooth transition in order to protect our citizens, especially the less well off, the sick and the vulnerable. Anything less would be a dereliction of public duty for this government.

    #87375 Reply
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    Mike 700
    Participant

    Operation Yellowbelly:

     

    An updated fictional set of exaggerated problems, put together by an institutionally biased Civil Service, revealed by the EU supporting Establishment , in order to spread panic amongst the masses?

    Armageddon awaits!

    I note that Corbyn and co have not requested the impact assessments of different ‘leaving with a deal’ scenarios?

    Funny that!

    • This reply was modified 6 days, 1 hour ago by Avatar Mike 700.
    • This reply was modified 6 days, 1 hour ago by Avatar Mike 700.
    #87378 Reply
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    Wigwam
    Participant

    What a cynical point of view Mike, which I happen to agree with.

    #87379 Reply
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    POPS
    Moderator

    Could you be wrong Mike?

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