BY FRANK HAVILAND
Just days away from the hallowed Brexit date of March 29th and we may be redefining the nation’s future on an hourly basis. As we near the crescendo to the most interminable 3 years’ procrastination, and the worst negotiation since Lady Godiva’s tailor agreed to be paid by the stitch, Great Britain is now in the position where absolutely no one knows what is going to happen come Friday. Last night – although talk of “revolution” and “putsch” gives idiot MPs too much credit – the UK became Planet of the Apes as Chief Ape Letwin decided to take over Parliament. The reality is the human executive of Government – even in its current parlous state – can still ignore what the apes do and say.
If the commentariat have got it right, the most likely outcome is either an extension of the Brexit deadline, a Remain deal so bad even the Conservative Party won’t swallow it, Theresa May’s resignation, a caretaker PM no one has heard of, the revocation of Article 50, a People’s Vote, a General Election, or (unlikeliest of all it seems according to the unbiased MSM), we actually get Brexit via No Deal. That is of course, provided Uri Geller doesn’t spoon us to death first.
For all the toing and froing and petulant heel-dragging of May’s government, Brexit is not actually that complicated an event. Like most things in life, it distils to legendary boxing promoter Frank Warren’s no-nonsense dictum: you want it, or you don’t want it.
They never wanted it.
For 3 years, a Remain Prime Minister has pulled the strings of a Remain administration, enveloped by a Remain cabinet, buttressed by Remain MPs in a Remain Parliament, aided and abetted by a Remain broadcaster, ‘negotiating’ with an enemy whose aims they openly share.
It has to be said, Brexiteers are not wholly without fault either – we took our eye off the ball prematurely. When Farage discovered he’d won the referendum, and promptly resigned as leader of UKIP, a cynic might have started to get nervous. Hindsight may be 20:20, but we’ve been myopic to say the least.
While Brexiteers were congratulating each other at the bar, the enemy was busy regrouping. Having gathered their full strength, they are now totally unabashed in their desire to thwart democracy, unveiling an interminable line of treasonous politicians who conspire with the EU in full view. In fact, if Vince Cable, Tony Blair, or Anna Soubry are ever missing in action, the safest bet is that they are obediently having their tummies tickled under Michel Barnier’s desk.
Unlike their masters, the British are not so easily hoodwinked. When project fear told us we’d run out of medicine, food and clean drinking water post-Brexit, the people told them to get stuffed. Had it been Digestive biscuits, it might have been another matter.
Say whatever you want about the British, but we know when we’re having the piss taken. We sorted this stuff out a long time ago at Runnymede, and I’m not sure we’re going to put up with the same nonsense a second time.
This gets to the crux of the Brexit debate: the real reason Remainers think we are thickos, is that on the whole the British do not like being told what to do. Sovereignty is imbued in our veins, and echoed throughout our history. From Magna Carta to Churchill’s ‘Never surrender’; Rule Britannia to Maggie’s ‘No! No! No!’ Britain doesn’t do slavery, not unless we can make a few quid exporting it naturally.
Remainers meanwhile are a different breed: perfectly willing to be ruled from Brussels, provided they have continuous access to cheap nannies, and do not have to suffer the ignominy of queuing:
Far be it from Middle England to hamper little Octavia’s commute to daddy’s villa in Tuscany, but sovereignty is too high a price to pay. Sovereignty is everything: control over your borders, your laws, your trade, and your future. To stand on your own two feet, and sink or swim by your wits alone is a beautiful and scary prospect. But no matter what fate befalls us, it must always be preferable to being held hostage, no matter how benevolent the captors, or how soft the beds may be.
That is why it is so distressing to see prominent Brexiteers lose their nerve at the eleventh hour. One by one, from Andrea Leadsom to Michael Gove they have fallen, proclaiming it better to accept a bad deal than no deal at all. They are missing the point. If democracy means nothing, we are in banana republic territory. The question then is not what kind of stitch-up we are prepared to accept in place of Brexit, but what kind of rebellion we wish to lead?
Come March 29th, assuming we don’t get a No Deal Brexit, then we ought to bring the country to its knees. What would be the point of playing ball any longer? For starters, the citizenry can refuse en masse to pay everything, from the licence fee to income tax. I’m not a great fan of strikes, and have never protested anything in my life – but this is too big, too important, and too final. We must act. On March 29th, the entire 17.4 million Leave voters should descend on Whitehall, calmly, non-violently, but firmly. Let’s see who blinks first.
If Britain is now nothing more than an outpost of Jean-Claude Juncker’s drinks cabinet, it must say so candidly. If not, it’s time to take a stand. If we are not prepared to defend democracy, then we must stop pretending to be a serious nation. Hand the Downing Street keys over to Comrade Corbyn; let Diane Abbott flog the Navy for £35, and give John McDonnell Esther McVey, and the hangman’s noose he has always dreamed of.
Thus far, the peasants have not been nearly revolting enough. Perhaps it’s time we started.