Brexit is being defined by the inability of political leaders and much of the media to be honest with themselves – and indeed anyone else. The result is the greatest outbreak of political lying of my lifetime. You can compare it with Suez, but at least in 1956, Hugh Gaitskell and the Labour opposition clearly stated that Eden’s pretext for invading Egypt was false. Now government and opposition compete to see who can tell the greater lies.
Take the Prime Minister. She and Corbyn agree that on no account should the public be allowed a second referendum. She must also agree with Corbyn that Britain should stay in the Customs Union. Her withdrawal agreement’s stipulation against the return of a hard border in Ireland demands nothing less.
I know that the Tory right has spent months advocating sci-fi solutions, and the fact that its leaders have been able to get away with peddling fantasy is further proof, if further proof is needed, of our political decadence. But if the British have learned anything in the past three years, it should be that the EU does not betray its members. It will not sacrifice Ireland to please Britain. Without a guarantee to protect the Good Friday Agreement, there will be no withdrawal agreement, and without a withdrawal agreement there will be no deal. No deal, in any circumstances. [Continue reading…]