back to article Brexit has shafted the UK's space sector, lord warns science minister

A letter to UK science minister Sam Gyimah has outlined the impact of Brexit on Britain's space sector, and it doesn't make for happy reading. The letter (PDF) by Lord Whitty follows oral evidence given to the Lords' EU Internal Market Sub-Committee on 15 March. The committee followed up the session with a jolly to the "space …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Unhappy

    Whats the issue?

    We can train them at great expense in the UK. They then can go work in the EU, most likely not having to pay anything back to the UK and thne EU can reap the rewards.

    Whats the issue?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Whats the issue?

      Exactly. Before the EU we had the "Brain Drain". Then we were in the EU and now a lot of our researchers could go to the mainland and work on projects that we benefited from because we were in the EU. Now we're leaving the EU and it's back to the Brain Drain.

      The new National Anthem needs to be a slightly modified version of the one in The Producers:

      "Don't be stupid, be a smartie! Come and join the Nasty Party."

      ...and the little old ladies lose all their savings.

      1. Rob D.

        Re: Whats the issue?

        > Don't be stupid, be a smartie!

        If we'd had more smarties in the first place we wouldn't be having this discussion. Being stupid (or being older) were the most relevant factors on the day, much more so than political affiliation (excepting the kippers who need 'special' consideration).

        Hence about the never-ending stream of articles like this one, the tired refrain, "Please stop telling me the blindingly obvious - only someone with half a brain wouldn't have realised that was always going to happen."

        1. fruitoftheloon
          Happy

          @Rob. D.Re: Whats the issue?

          Rob,

          speak for yourself: assumptions, presumptions and biases that is...

          On the plus side [for the remoaners] this may actually be something negative about Brexit [and actually real] that they can pin their flags to

          Jay.

          1. Rich 11 Silver badge

            Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

            this may actually be something negative about Brexit [and actually real]

            I really don't think you've been paying attention.

            1. fruitoftheloon
              Happy

              @Rich 11: Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

              Rich,

              to what?

              Regards,

              Jay

          2. TVU

            Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

            "On the plus side [for the remoaners] this may actually be something negative about Brexit [and actually real] that they can pin their flags to"

            That was a cheap shot. Just for the record Brexit, and the uncertainty surrounding Brexit will, within the next 18 months, turn the UK from a world GDP ranking of 5 (below Germany) to a ranking of 7 (below both France and India). The source of that information is the IMF and it shows just how much damage to the British economy that has been caused by Brexit.

            All those who voted Leave should own that issue and accept that they voted to shaft the British economy and flush it down the gary glitter.

            1. Rich 11 Silver badge

              Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

              flush it down the gary glitter.

              I can't decide whether that's the most apt piece of rhyming slang I've ever heard or whether I truly wish I'd never been reminded of the existence of that bastard.

            2. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

              Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

              Perhaps you should listen to the reasons people voted Leave, and not just assume that anyone who doesn't agree with you is a knuckle-dragging moron? Because we voted to IMPROVE Britain's economic chances by not tying it to a dying protectionist bureaucracy....

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                "Because we voted to IMPROVE Britain's economic chances by not tying it to a dying protectionist bureaucracy"

                I imagine at least 2/3 of the people who voted Leave could not tell you in any detail what that sentence even meant, let alone provide evidence for it. And I'm cutting the Leave voters a lot of slack.

                What's more, I bet you cut and paste "dying protectionist bureaucracy" from some right wing rag. It's not something a normal person with a functioning brain would come up with, because the first two words are counterfactual.

                1. ToddRundgrensUtopia

                  Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                  Voyna i Mor

                  Impressed that you have worked it all out, when most others assumed a multitude of reasons for leaving, such as: sovereignty, law, immigration, sovereignty, undetected bureaucrats in charge, sovereignty and as we now know some pretty unpleasant EU officials.

                  So well done, I will now go back to my cave and re-start painting, you ignorant t@@t

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                    @ToddRundgrensUtopia

                    My, what a bilious little post, complete with uncalled for insult. Are you trying to reinforce the stereotype of Brexit voters?

                    Perhaps rather than try to conceal rude words that aren't blocked by the Reg anyway, you could try explaining how sovereignty is going to work for a country that no longer has the world's biggest Navy and merchant fleet and is even dependent on Chinese investment to run its ports?

                    Doing a Daily Mail type splutter is not a substitute for rational argument. Tell me, if Tata and Honda and Nissan and Sony and EDF and RWE, to name a few, all start to get tough with the Government, what are you going to do? Declare war on India, Japan, Germany and France?

                    Sovereignty is nothing when the banks could do a run on Sterling tomorrow and bring down the government. Within the EU, we had some protection against that sort of thing. On our own, we have none at all.

                    It helps to have the slightest understanding of international affairs and organisations, and the ownership of GB PLC, before sounding off about "sovereignty".

                    I suspect you don't know much about law and treaties either.

                    But, as psychological research has shown that right wingers simply reject unwelcome information and seek confirmation, no matter how meaningless, there's no chance of this sinking in.

                    I am also, for your information, not an "ignorant t@@t". I am a rather well informed, Oxbridge educated, t@@t. Thank you.

              2. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

                Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                Because we voted to IMPROVE Britain's economic chances by not tying it to a dying protectionist bureaucracy....

                When did we have the vote to get rid of the Whitehall? Because we have more bureaucratic civil servants there than in the entire EU.

                Your aim may have been to improve the British economy, and that is laudable. However, the result of leaving the EU will undoubtedly be the opposite. Just from abandoning the multilateral trade agreements we have though the EU and trying to replace them with unilateral agreements will mean we end up worse off on the global stage, simply because of the time this will take during which we will have to trade under less favourable WTO rules. Other nations won't be falling over themselves to draw up deals with a tiny little country off the coast of the world's largest trading bloc.

                1. ToddRundgrensUtopia

                  Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                  Evidence for "undoubtedly" please

              3. K Silver badge

                Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                "by not tying it to a dying protectionist bureaucracy"

                Just as rest of the world is turning protectionist, such as tarrifs from USA and China etc, aha yep that's a clever move!

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                  @ K

                  "Just as rest of the world is turning protectionist, such as tarrifs from USA and China etc, aha yep that's a clever move!"

                  Please please please tell me you dont want us to join in the protectionism? Higher tariffs are a cost on the customer. Whatever tariffs we apply dont apply to the supplier but to the customer, the person buying.

                  While the US make things more expensive for Americans (and lose jobs because of it) and the EU retaliates by punishing its own citizens we should save ourselves the punishment of flogging ourselves. E.g. Tariffs on Chinese steel cost American jobs by charging US business more for steel than the cost of steel. If we leave the EU and reduce the tariff on importing food the cost of food comes down because we will be paying the price for food and not more (as the EU dictates).

            3. Alan Brown Silver badge

              Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

              "All those who voted Leave should own that issue"

              It may come as a surprise to find that a significant number of staff in the affected companies and laboratories voted Brexit on the basis of taking back control and are now bewildered by all these contracts going off to Europe (even after it was explained that this would happen)

              But then again so are the people of Sunderland about Nissan effectively winding down operations.

              1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                "But then again so are the people of Sunderland about Nissan effectively winding down operations."

                Although to be fair, that's more about uk.gov encouraging the take up of diesel cars because they produce less CO2 and now they are taxing them up the wazoo because they suddenly realised they produce other pollutants. And to cap it off, have mandated the elimination of ICE car over a relatively short time despite few plans for an increase in the electricity generation and distribution infrastructure. Brexit effects are probably minor in comparison to the sudden slump in diesel car sales in the UK

              2. ToddRundgrensUtopia

                Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                Sunderland about Nissan effectively winding down operations. Utter nonsense. The lay offs are because of a cliff edge, (proper usage), fall in the purchase of diesel engined cars, due to confused government policy and lying German car makers.

              3. rg287 Silver badge

                Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

                But then again so are the people of Sunderland about Nissan effectively winding down operations.

                They are? News to Nissan.

                About 700 redundancies have been announced but that's in response to a European drop in automotive sales - they laid off 1200 people in 2009 (the Primera went EOL around the same time as the 2008 Crash killed automotive sales).

                NMUK will grow again in another 12 months when the new Qashqai and X-Trails start production. Nissan have also invested in a very expensive Li-Ion battery plant at what remains the most efficient automotive plant in Europe, so they're not going to be in a hurry to close it all down and shift it to France unless they absolutely have to.

              4. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                Unhappy

                But then again..the people of Sunderland about Nissan effectively winding down operations.

                I got the impression the people who worked for Nissan had a pretty good idea, which is why most voted remain.

                The people further away got all nostalgic, fantasizing no doubt about the return to shipbuilding on the Tyne and other such assorted bo***ks.

                I wonder. Will Brexit be the British Working Classes longest suicide note?

            4. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              The clue is in the name

              INTERNATIONAL monetary fund - it's full of foreigners and foreigners and traitors always run down Brexit!

            5. fruitoftheloon
              Happy

              @TVU:Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

              TVU,

              may be, how accurate do you think recent IMF forecasts have been about the UK economy?

              Just wondered...

              Thanks for your engagement.

              Jay

            6. ToddRundgrensUtopia

              Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

              Because the IMF's forecasts are always, oh wait, wrong!

          3. rtfazeberdee

            Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

            @fruitoftheloon

            ROFLMAO... brexiter cluelessness to the core

            1. fruitoftheloon
              Stop

              Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

              rtfazeberdee

              do you actually have a clear, structured point to make here, or are you just pointing fingers and laughing like a child in the corner????

              Jay

          4. Loyal Commenter Silver badge

            Re: @Rob. D.Whats the issue?

            On the plus side [for the remoaners] ...

            When your main argument is based around name-calling the people who have been repeatedly pointing out the flaws in the reasons giving for leaving, it becomes increasingly frustrating for those who are able to actually follow the myriad arguments against leaving the EU.

        2. YARR

          EU big, EU right

          excepting the kippers who need 'special' consideration

          We voted to leave the EU, not ESA. That means the electorate is opposed to closer political & economic union, but not against research collaboration. The EU is still on track to become a superstate, it's way more than just the free trade area we voted to join originally.

          Our membership of ESA predates the EU's, but it appears the EU now decides who qualifies to participate, but Brexit must be seen to take the rap for the change in participation requirements (it's better PR for globalisation that way).

          It's probably a good thing to define the future relationship now, since in the long term the EU superstate is likely to foment control of more European institutions. Every institution will have to decide it's raison d'etre. Should they serve the people or the powerful, and what's the contention?

          1. werdsmith Silver badge

            Re: EU big, EU right

            We voted to leave the EU, not ESA.

            In an ideal world that would be relevant.

            Unfortunately in the real world ESA is not the relevant organisation as it doesn't really make stuff. Most of the serious space industry in the UK is owned by Airbus Defence & Space which has its HQ and increasingly its operations in Germany. UK is damn good at the bit that it does but its talents are being bled out into the EU nations slowly but surely. They like to recruit people with French or German and if not the star talent gets to learn both those languages.

            Unless the government does something serious to maintain the space industry that has been developed over the last 60+ years through top industry, science and in our universities we are going to see it all but disappear from leading certain areas, to being a bit part player.

            This is the sector in which I now work, and I can see the effect of brexit already. I'm not being negative as some of these nervous brexiters like to bluster, I just don't have my head in the sand.

            1. Alan Brown Silver badge

              Re: EU big, EU right

              "This is the sector in which I now work, and I can see the effect of brexit already. "

              Ditto and I saw it the day after the vote, when contracts that were being negotiated simply went off the table.

              We've subsequently been told not to bother bidding for anything that would run past Brexit day.

            2. Alistair Thomas

              Re: EU big, EU right

              ... and this drain to the continent and prejudice of German-based management to German and French speakers was going to be less if we had remained?

              It seems to me that Brexit provides a golden opportunity to call out the EU on the discriminatory practices you highlight and get some redress if we are to stay in the club.

              However higher education is funded (debts currently) it occurs to me that we could attempt to stem the flow of qualified folk leaving by investing properly in vital industries and having some programme of debt repayment in areas of vital skills, science, engineering, teaching, medical etc in exchange for service. After say 5 - 10 years, a qualified person should be debt free and free to go wherever they like, but hopefully by that point they'll be part of something bigger and meaningful and will choose to stay. By contrast, those that choose to work for other countries should have higher debt repayment schedules (expressed not as a penalty but as a lack of a concession that a UK worker would receive).

              You've highlighted a problem, what's your solution? In the EU or out of the EU is just geography.

          2. Lars Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: EU big, EU right

            "Our membership of ESA predates the EU's, but it appears the EU now decides who qualifies to participate".

            I would point out this:

            Founding members and initial signatories drafted the ESA charter which entered into force on 30 October 1980.

            Framework Agreement establishing the legal basis for cooperation between ESA and the European Union came into force in May 2004.

            The UK was a EU member then.

            As Canada has been mentioned, Canada is a Cooperating State of ESA.

          3. rg287 Silver badge

            Re: EU big, EU right

            Our membership of ESA predates the EU's, but it appears the EU now decides who qualifies to participate, but Brexit must be seen to take the rap for the change in participation requirements (it's better PR for globalisation that way).

            This is true, but many of the big ticket projects (like Galileo) are EU projects contracted/delivered by ESA. Unfortunately, quite a lot of EU/ESA members are funding via the EU (Nation > EU > ESA), where once it would have been a Nation > ESA relationship.

            We're not leaving ESA and the membership of the EU and ESA do not line up precisely - heck, Canada is an ESA cooperating nation, so there's no grounds for our exit, but it limits the projects we might be involved in if they're ESA/EU rather than pure ESA.

            The EU has basically done a MITM on the ESA.

          4. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

            Re: EU big, EU right

            "Our membership of ESA predates the EU's, but it appears the EU now decides who qualifies to participate, but Brexit must be seen to take the rap for the change in participation requirements (it's better PR for globalisation that way)."

            According to the ESA wikipedia page, not only are there non-EU full members, not all EU countries are members of ESA (although the EU itself is, but that means those EU non-members don't pay directly into ESA)

          5. Avalanche

            Re: EU big, EU right

            The specific projects in question are EU projects that are contracted out to the ESA. So it is not an ESA project, and as the EU foots the bill, they decide who works on it. There are also some security-related issues which they only want EU members to handle.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Whats the issue?

        "...and the little old ladies lose all their savings."

        That will be the ridiculous taxes they should expect to be imposed, after all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit.. so Shurely won't mind paying the costs for training all the new Dr's, scientists and other specialists!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

          I'm over 65 and most certainly did not vote to leave. But go ahead and downvote me.

          1. Lars Silver badge
            Unhappy

            Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

            "But go ahead and downvote me." If you say so, it's done.

            What is known is that there were more remain among the more educated and more leave among the less educated, more remain in the younger generation and more leave in the older generation. And then there was regional differences and then there was all those who did not vote and those who had no vote. And that's about it.

            Pointing fingers at individuals who voted as they voted is unfair and useless.

            What annoys me are all the cowards among your MPs who refuse to stand up because they are afraid of ending up as "enemies of the people" in some rubbish rag.

            Cowardice is a trait wherein fear and excessive self-concern override doing or saying what is right, good, and of help to others or oneself in a time of need—it is the opposite of courage. Wikipedia

            1. fruitoftheloon
              Happy

              @Lars:Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

              Lars,

              please provide a link to a statistically valid study with the aforementioned in, then I will gladly stand corrected.

              Regards,

              Jay

              1. EnviableOne Bronze badge

                @fruitoftheloon Statistics

                https://www.electoralcommission.org.uk/find-information-by-subject/elections-and-referendums/past-elections-and-referendums/eu-referendum/eu-referendum-result-visualisations

                https://yougov.co.uk/news/2016/06/27/how-britain-voted/

                the fact remains that 51.9% of 72.2% of the voting population voted in a non-binding referendum to leave the EU (the remaining 27.8% not bothering to vote.)

                this result is in contrast to the only other national referendums, 1975 EC referendum where 67.23% voted to remain (a two thirds majority) and the 2011 UK AV referendum where 67.9% voted to not change. turnouts were 64% and 42% respectivley.

                there is no argument that the EU as it stands is a less than effective organisation, but the only way to fix it is with a seat at the table. The Leave campaign were pushing the "Norway" option throughout the campaign, which leaves the UK part of the customs union and subject to the majority of eu rules, with no seat at the table, and lower commitments to EU institutions. the Idea of a hard brexit and its stark economic relaities were downplayed, and the slight yes on the soft option, taken as a hard yes of the extreme option by the May Cabinet.

                consiquently there are some leave voters jumping up and down saying, this is nt what we voted for, and the remainers sticking to there you got to be in the club to fix the club.

                1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

                  Re: @fruitoftheloon Statistics

                  "consiquently there are some leave voters jumping up and down saying, this is nt what we voted for, and the remainers sticking to there you got to be in the club to fix the club."

                  You hit the nail on the head there. The remainers all wanted the same thing, the status quo. The levers had multiple reasons for voting leave and they are not all getting what they wanted. The referendum was badly organised in that no one really had any idea what brexit might look like.

                  It's was a bit like booking a group holiday to India and no one in the group actually deciding where in India to go until the day before leaving. Goa? The far north? Somewhere in between? Oh dear, it IS a big place isn't it.

                  1. codejunky Silver badge

                    Re: @fruitoftheloon Statistics

                    @ John Brown (no body)

                    "The remainers all wanted the same thing, the status quo. The levers had multiple reasons for voting leave and they are not all getting what they wanted"

                    Fear of change probably does sum up some for the remain position but to think they are unified is amusing. The EU is a socialist utopia and a capitalist wonderland. It is a globalist entity and a protectionist entity. It takes no sovereignty but also doesnt allow countries to make their own choices. It is a shared vision of Europe and we will not give up our opt-outs. It is a success story and in bad shape in need of our help to reform.

                    As for what the EU will become, that seems to be somewhere between what it wants to be and what it can get away with without more members voting to leave. So both groups have different visions for the future within their members but one group voted remain, the other voted leave.

                    1. Tigra 07 Silver badge
                      Thumb Down

                      Re: @fruitoftheloon Statistics

                      "The EU is a socialist utopia and a capitalist wonderland. It is a globalist entity and a protectionist entity. It takes no sovereignty but also doesnt allow countries to make their own choices"

                      So...No loss of sovereignty, but do what we say or else...Yeah, sounds like we have our sovereignty intact there...Not

                      It's a protectionist gravy train for a privileged bunch, propping up special interests for certain countries against others.

            2. maffski

              Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

              '...What is known is that there were more remain among the more educated and more leave among the less educated, more remain in the younger generation and more leave in the older generation. And then there was regional differences and then there was all those who did not vote and those who had no vote. And that's about it....'

              What is known is that there was more leave than remain. And that's about it.

              It's the very basis of democracy. That your opinion isn't worth more than mine, and that my opinion isn't worth more than yours.

              Although regarding the story, lots of people doing well in the current situation want the current situation to continue so they can do well. Quelle surprise.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

                The UK is of-course welcome to stay in the EU, it isn't to late or permanent.

                of course there is this BIG thing on booth sides... " ego/pride/grandeur "

              2. Lars Silver badge
                Happy

                Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

                "What is known is that there was more leave than remain.".

                What is also known is that an ill informed, gullible population will in a referendum produce an ill informed result.

                1. codejunky Silver badge

                  Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

                  @ Lars

                  "What is also known is that an ill informed, gullible population will in a referendum produce an ill informed result."

                  I feel that comment can be agreed on by both sides.

                2. ToddRundgrensUtopia

                  Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

                  £9 Million quid spent by the Cameron government and yet us knuckleheads still voted to leave. You figure it!

                3. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                  Unhappy

                  "an ill informed, gullible population will in a referendum produce an ill informed result."

                  And did.

              3. Alan Brown Silver badge

                Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

                "What is known is that there was more leave than remain. And that's about it"

                At the polling booth.

                By a gnat's fart

                On an advisory (not binding) referendum) - which is important as the advertising rules are different.

                With a very low turnout.

                And the leavers were shouting from the rooftops that if it went the other way they would ensure that "this would not be the end of it"

                Where the campaigning got so ugly an MP was murdered.

                etc.

                1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                  Unhappy

                  And the leavers..from the rooftops..they would ensure that "this would not be the end of it"

                  And they'd already kept up their hysterical whining for 42 years they could probably do it longer.

                  Brexiteers.

                  If a child behaved that way at a restaurant I was dining at I'd be asking the parent to put a muzzle on the brat.

                  If they didn't I'd be getting out the duct tape.

                  I despise children who whine. If their adults (or worse yet corporations) I despise them more.

            3. Tigra 07 Silver badge
              Thumb Up

              Re: Lars

              A degree in Gender Studies may make you more educated but it doesn't make you smarter.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Lars

                "A degree in Gender Studies may make you more educated but it doesn't make you smarter."

                It depends on how it is taught and who is teaching it. If it's rote learning, even STEM subjects are pointless (see Feynman on Brazil). In my career I have been often acutely aware of the difference between people who know the formula for, say, the strength of a beam, and people who understand how to design one. If the teaching is challenging and involves getting people to think, subjects like history and even theology may provide excellent training for life - if only recognising when someone else is engaged in magical thinking or is about to make an error which in the past has had dire consequences. You don't need to be a Marxist to think that Zizek is thought provoking.

                I mention that because in the past when interviewing for positions I've formed the view that CS and similar degrees from certain universities appear worthless, whereas I once worked with a zoologist who turned out to be a whiz at computing - understanding taxonomy is a very sound basis for database work.

          2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
            Unhappy

            "I'm over 65 and most certainly did not vote to leave. "

            TBH it seemed you needed to be over 65 and gullible to fall for this bu***hit.

            Otherwise being young and stupid seemed to be a good choice as well.

            What gobsmacked me was that even people who'd worked in newspapers (and new how "news" gets made) were played like Stradivari.

            To such people D. Trump, V. Putin and R. Murdoch (all of whom supported Leave) have a little message for you.

            "Thanks, suckers. We couldn't have done it without you, especially as none of us were allowed to vote."

          3. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

            My parents are over 65 and I know my mum voted to stay in the EU. I'm not sure about my dad though, he's been getting more racist in his old age, I think someone's been letting him read the daily mail.

          4. Lars Silver badge
            Happy

            Re: all its very same golden-year grey heads that largely voted for Brexit

            "I'm over 65 and most certainly did not vote to leave".

            Ah please AC, we all know that all over 65 did not vote leave, so cheer up and have a listen to this video, in it a rather young pro Brexit panel speak a fair amount of rubbish and the only one in the audience, who has had enough and stands up, is a guy your age perhaps.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8J6LUmOt0O0

    2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Coat

      Before we get too excited. Keep in mind Canada is a member of ESA.

      It's not even on the same continent.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Before we get too excited. Keep in mind Canada is a member of ESA.

        It also pays in a lot more than the UK does.

        ESA is a consortium which gives out work based on how much money gets put in by the consituent members. Of Europe's spacefaring members the UK has the lowest contributions for a long time and has also been demanding far more than it contributes for a long time.

        In many ways Brexit is an excuse to get rid of an annoying leeching partner, or at least making it pony-up what what it should be doing. The UK has built up a huge amount of resentment across Europe with its endless demands for special treatment and as such it's no surprise there's little appetite amongst european leaders to continue extending those privileges when Britain is seen to be whipping up xenophobia.

        Even if Brexit was cancelled tomorrow, the special deals would likely go away and the UK told to contribute according to its actual worth as a partner. The alternative (going it alone) has been tried before - it's rather ironic that it's the old fogeys and kippers all voted for brexit when they should be the ones remembering how bad things were before joining the EEC/EU pulled Britain out of the shitter.

      2. Alistair Thomas

        Re: Before we get too excited. Keep in mind Canada is a member of ESA.

        Don't let facts get in the way of a good story. There's no place for common sense like yours in this debate.

        Many young remoaners want to have a good rant and slag off old people who have already contributed most of their lives to provide much of the framework of support and opportunity that young folk now take for granted.

  2. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Brexit has shafted the UK's space sector

      Contrary to your obviously ignorant assumptions, the UK Space industry is/WAS a very successful segment of manufacturing industry in this country.

      I assume you are also one of those ignoramuses who believes the UK has no manufacturing industry...

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Brexit has shafted the UK's space sector

      I'll just leave these here:

      https://www.director.co.uk/uk-space-industry-meet-the-leader-behind-our-fastest-growing-sector/

      https://www.adsgroup.org.uk/blog/8-world-facts-satellites/

    3. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: Brexit has shafted the UK's space sector

      Because the "Space Sector" (tm) is so successful...

      Even India has a better space sector than the UK (though you could argue that the UK pays for some of that out of the foreign aid budget)

      Oh FFS.

    4. ZanzibarRastapopulous

      Re: Brexit has shafted the UK's space sector

      In reality Brexit has shafted every sector.

  3. ArrZarr Silver badge
    Unhappy

    The UK is the only country on Earth to develop a rocket capable of staying off Earth and then deciding that Earth really isn't so bad and giving up on the concept.

    It must me something about our weather that made space seem so unappealing.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Or deciding that the high value / skills are in the payloads and the science not in re-badging ICBMs to chuck the stuff up there

      1. detritus

        Quite - this seems to be the crux of a recent admission from the Russians in relation to their competing with SpaceX's increased launch capability...

        https://arstechnica.com/science/2018/04/russia-appears-to-have-surrendered-to-spacex-in-the-global-launch-market/

        "The share of launch vehicles is as small as 4 percent of the overall market of space services," Rogozin said in an interview with a Russian television station. "The 4 percent stake isn’t worth the effort to try to elbow Musk and China aside. Payloads manufacturing is where good money can be made."

        (Is linking to Ars ok here after Mr Page's defection? :| )

      2. ArrZarr Silver badge

        Call me paranoid, I don't care. But personally I'd prefer to have at least some kind of home grown launcher instead of having to rely on others if we might be so lucky to pay them for the privilege of having our satellites in space.

        I'd also prefer to have some sort of magical home grown plane that we could use on our carriers without having to rely on others if we might be so lucky to pay them for the privilege of being able to use our carriers but that's another discussion

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          No problem, on leaving Europe it will be possible to reposition Britain in the global launch market.

          Some areas of the Caribbean are close enough to the equator and with the necessary down-range oops ocean to make this practical, I suggest that Britain is moved there

          1. casinowilhelm

            So that's what May and Rudd have been up to - moving some british citizens to the caribbean in advance of the main party?

            1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

              I've been given to understand that Europeans have been an invasive species in the Carribean since 1492 or so.

              1. werdsmith Silver badge

                Maybe need to remind people that UK launched Prospero X-3 into orbit with a 1300km apogoee in 1971 aboard a British Black Arrow launcher and it's still in orbit.

        2. Roland6 Silver badge

          >I'd also prefer to have some sort of magical home grown plane that we could use on our carriers without having to rely on others if we might be so lucky to pay them for the privilege of being able to use our carriers but that's another discussion

          Well, if the carriers didn't leave port, I'm sure they would be a perfectly serviceable base for a squadron of Spitfires(*)...

          (*) To some a "magical home grown plane"...

    2. Roland6 Silver badge

      >The UK is the only country on Earth to develop a rocket capable of staying off Earth and then deciding that Earth really isn't so bad and giving up on the concept.

      This logic reminds me of Douglas Adams.

      Interestingly, it is quite clear the Infinite Improbability Drive was developed by British scientists - who else knows how to brew "a fresh cup of really hot tea"?

      Likewise, the Total Perspective Vortex, another 'British' invention - who else would have fairy cakes?

  4. Dr_N Silver badge
    Mushroom

    Don't Panic!

    This is all part of the big, secret brexit plan to take back control and make England great again.

    Just ask all the great brexit minds like John Redwood, Daniel Hannan and Nigel Farage.

    Per aspera ad astra! (Unless it all blows up on the launchpad.)

    1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Don't Panic!

      More likely to be per aspera ad ardua

      1. Mephistro Silver badge
        Coffee/keyboard

        Re: Don't Panic!

        ROFLMAO++

      2. Dr_N Silver badge
        Pint

        Re: Don't Panic!

        >More likely to be per aspera ad ardua

        You've come up with the perfect brexit motto.

        If they are minting any commemorative brexit coinage*, that should definitely be on it.

        Well done. Monday beer?

        *Probably a new sixpence and threepenny bit.

        1. Roland6 Silver badge

          Re: Don't Panic!

          The road to hell is paved with good intentions...

          >If they are minting any commemorative brexit coinage*

          Depends on who's minting it. But given a coin has two sides, we could have the UKIP rose tinted backward looking take on one side: per aspera ad paradisum and on the other reality: per aspera ad inferi

          >*Probably a new sixpence and threepenny bit.

          Interestingly, the reversion to 'real' money wasn't one of the things UKIP et al said they wanted to do post Brexit. However, there is no reason why we couldn't introduce a new threepenny bit and sixpence - the modern threepenny bit would be worth about the same as the 1984 one pence piece and the sixpence a 1984 two pence piece.

        2. imanidiot Silver badge
          Pint

          Re: Don't Panic!

          "Ad Astra Tabernamque" surely!

  5. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
    IT Angle

    An insider speaks

    An ESA insider told The Register "the fact the UK is leaving shows that something is not entirely right with the EU and that the EU needs some level of reform"

    Random people are always right, absolutely right, no question about it.

    I had to check I hadn't accidentally landed at the Mail Online.

    1. detritus

      Re: An insider speaks

      How is such an innocuous statement wrong, or indeed more absolutist and polarised than your reaction to it? I hold The Guardian and the Daily Mail at about the same level in terms of oral frothing, even if they're on different sides. Picking on the DM's like shitting in a barrel full of dead fish, easy enough to do but pointless and unbecoming.

      I personally have perceived lots wrong with the EU, but I didn't Vote for Brexit and I have more than most Brits to lose by our leaving (partner, family, etc). Just because the Daily Mail wants us out, doesn't mean the EU's not without fault.

      Personally I think we sould've stayed in - can't fix something from the outside. Oh well.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: An insider speaks

        We don't know who it is or what are they're grinding. Both important things to know when it comes to discussing Brexit.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: An insider speaks

          "We don't know who it is or what are they're grinding"

          Fenja och Menja

          The future of this country.

      2. Pier Reviewer

        Re: An insider speaks

        “Just because the Daily Mail wants us out, doesn't mean the EU's not without fault.”

        True, but not an entirely logical statement to make. There’s no causal link there. That’s exactly how a lot of the propaganda online and in the media operates - state an apparent (although often false) axiom, then state the “fact” that must also be true as a result.

        There’s also the issue that “without fault” is a pretty high hurdle to leap. Let he who is without sin and all that malarkey.

        Leaving the EU (or whatever else) because it isn’t without fault is a little OTT. Leaving because it gives you more power/money on the other hand makes sense. Ofc for the great majority that doesn’t apply. It just happens to be that some rich white blokes who live overseas might just benefit...

      3. Adam 52 Silver badge

        Re: An insider speaks

        "I hold The Guardian and the Daily Mail at about the same level in terms of oral frothing"

        Guardian articles tend to be researched or obvious opinion pieces. They don't usually lie. Daily Mail articles tend to be propaganda disguised as news and the facts are often just plain wrong (either through poor research or deliberate lying).

        By all means compare the Guardian and Telegraph for polarised journalism, but the Mail isn't really on the same spectrum.

        "Picking on the DM's like shitting in a barrel full of dead fish, easy enough to do but pointless and unbecoming."

        There are still people who believe it's acceptable, even erudite, to read the Daily Mail in public. 4 million people read it. The more public humiliation these people suffer​ the more likely they are to change their ways. A bit like it's no longer acceptable to keep slaves, beat your wife or drink drive.

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          Re: An insider speaks

          "By all means compare the Guardian and Telegraph for polarised journalism, but the Mail isn't really on the same spectrum."

          LOL.

          People trying to defend the Guardian is always amusing. Regardless of what research went into and journalism, bias is bias and lies are lies. Guardian and Mail are at identical levels of gutter-rag status and your personal preference or leanings don't make one better than the other.

          1. TomChaton

            Re: An insider speaks

            "...your personal preference or leanings don't make one better than the other"

            But apparently yours does.

          2. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: An insider speaks

            "Guardian and Mail are at identical levels of gutter-rag status"

            I take it you haven't noticed the Telegraph's taken to issuing foam-flecked rants over the last couple of years, apparently on the basis of "if you can't beat the red tops, join them"

            By comparison the Guardian is an editorially well-balanced rag, but that's not really saying much when virtually all the UK papers display obvious and heavily biased editorial policies. We all know that the Mail openly endorsed Moseley, brownshirts and that nice Mr Hitler chap. Its policies have never really changed since then, but a lot more papers have been joining it recently.

            1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
              Coat

              "We all know that the Mail openly endorsed Moseley,"

              As would its sister paper (had it existed) "Der Heil Un Sontag"

      4. NerryTutkins

        Re: An insider speaks

        While I have reservations about the general trustworthiness of Wikipedia, they have branded the Daily Heil as an unreliable source.

        And best of all, here's a link to a Guardian article about it :)

        https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2017/feb/08/wikipedia-bans-daily-mail-as-unreliable-source-for-website

        The editors described the arguments for a ban as “centred on the Daily Mail’s reputation for poor fact checking, sensationalism and flat-out fabrication”.

        Hurrah for the Blackshirts!

  6. TonyDeaf

    Actually @Lost all faith the students we train still have to pay back their earnings wherever they are on Earth. I checked up on this for my children who are being slowly sold off to the Student Loans Company as we speak.

    Here's the list the nice people have provided showing the earnings threshold at which you have to start paying ££ back to blighty for each country.

    http://www.studentloanrepayment.co.uk/portal/page?_pageid=93,6678668&_dad=portal&_schema=PORTAL

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      come and get me!

      Someone I know has a student loan, and promptly left the country with no intention to return and pay a great heap of money,

      1. NerryTutkins

        Re: come and get me!

        The law of unintended consequences, politicians really should read Freakonomics.

        Impose tuition fees to recover the costs of education (though obvious not on the politicians themselves, who all got their degrees for free), then look puzzled when the people all decide to take the education, then leave to avoid paying for it.

        So not only do they not get the money, they don't even get the trained person either.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: come and get me!

          Also, where do you think the money for tuition comes from? Debt with interest that we all have to pay eventually so you have to wonder why they just didn't keep it government covered in the first place but then you can't be educating everyone can you.

          1. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: come and get me!

            " Debt with interest that we all have to pay eventually "

            And then the kippers all whine about how the young people are greedy and charge so much,

    2. joeldillon

      That's nice, but how will the student loans people know if someone abroad has crossed that threshold? Unlike people living in the UK, they don't have access to foreign tax returns.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge

        You have to keep supplying them with payslips or tax returns to show you're below the threshold. If you don't they'll start to charge your UK bank account.

        If you leave the country and burn your bridges, don't choose Australia.

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          "If you don't they'll start to charge your UK bank account."

          Can anyone spot the built-in assumption?

          1. Dan 55 Silver badge

            Landing your parents in bother and having to deal with debt and a crap credit rating if/when you come back keep most graduates in check I would have thought.

    3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Actually @Lost all faith the students we train still have to pay back their earnings wherever they are on Earth.

      Good luck trying to enforce that.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    UK spaceports

    "It wasn't all doom and gloom (OK, it was mainly doom and gloom) with the committee welcoming public funds being splurged on UK spaceports"

    ..... thus clearly demonstrating why they should not be given any access to public funds.

  8. SVV Silver badge

    Cue Boris Johnson....

    Take back control! No more of these froggy fireworks! No, we won't just be Global Britain, we'll be Cosmic Britain, sailing the seven spaceways, seeking out new lifeforms and civilisations, boldly trading where no country has traded before! And there'll be no more six tentacled martian jellywhatnots coming down here and doing jobs more efficiently than traditional two-handed British people could do.... and we definitely will never have anything to do with those dastardly planets in the Galactic Union, with their unelected bureaocrats on Brussellius V telling us what to do! No, we shall be making deals with planets in parallel universes instead!

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Cue Boris Johnson....

      Shades of Space Captain Smith there.

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Cue Boris Johnson....

      "parallel universes"

      I think you've just explained BoJo.

    3. Charlie Clark Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: Cue Boris Johnson....

      For BoJo really we really need either a cake or a clown icon — get on it hacks — in the meantime he's a well-deserved pint for your excellent post.

    4. Tom 64
      Mushroom

      Re: Cue Boris Johnson....

      Can we have Boris test the first British Built (tm) rocket please?

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Cue Boris Johnson....

        "Can we have Boris test the first British Built (tm) rocket please?"

        Only as long as you can guarantee that it has 12G initial acceleration for 30 seconds.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Cue Boris Johnson....

      @SVV; Am I the only person who finds the continuing treatment of Boris Johnson as the "bumbling but loveable upperclass English buffoon"- even in gentle mockery such as your own- long past its sell-by date?

      This is a man who- judging by his dubious "conversion"- is considered by many not to have believed strongly or at all in Brexit before he saw the opportunity to advance his own political career by jumping on the "Leave" bandwagon. Perhaps he didn't intend to succeed and "merely" risked the political future and wellbeing of the United Kingdom for his own self-serving purposes? You'll understand if I really don't feel like absolving him on that basis.

      This is a man who may well have become Prime Minister had he not been stabbed in the back by (the equally odious, but more openly so) Michael Gove.

      It's quite clear that he's shrewdly exploited that "likeably bumbling" image to distract attention from his self-serving ambitiousness, and we saw him at it again earlier this year when he tried interfering outwith his designated post as "Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs" to push for NHS funding after Brexit. Because we *all* know that he's concerned about the NHS, and it's nothing to do with the fact that he and his cronies sold Brexit on the "£350m for the NHS claims" and want to keep themselves looking good.

      The same guy who- while editor of The Spectator- was happy to approve articles smearing the people of Liverpool as wallowing in post-Hillsborough "victim" status.

      This is the same old Tory scum, through and through. Playing along with the "harmless teddy bear" image- even in the form of gentle ribbing- is doing Johnson (and his fellow Tories) a favour he doesn't deserve.

      1. SVV Silver badge

        Re: Cue Boris Johnson....

        Err, just to be clear with you, I don't buy the bumbling buffoon schtick one bit either, that's why I tried to parody the sort of casual racist remarks he makes, because those who have fallen for the act (and it is a carefully and cynically constructed act) tend not to see the consequences of letting him get away with it. Hence I never use cutesy nicknames lke "Boris" or "BoJo" when referring to him. Now, if I only I'd thought to add in a sentence or two about Jeremy Corbyn blasting him for his "squidwhistle planetism" I could have hit some more targets I dislike!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Cue Boris Johnson....

          @SVV; Okay, fair enough, I'm happy to accept that was the intention. I think the problem is by mocking him in his own style, it's all too easy to read it as just another "Oh, Boris!"

          (It probably didn't help that the people replying- i.e. not yourself- seemed to take it that way, including references to the aforementioned "BoJo". So I apologise for possibly letting others' replies influence how I saw your post. )

  9. Andy 73

    Hmmm..

    This follows on from representatives from the Automotive industry telling government that if they "don't act quickly" (tm) industry jobs would be at risk... and representatives from the Agricultural industry telling the government that if they "don't act quickly.." you get the idea.

    That's not to dismiss their concerns, but to point out that yes, Brexit is going to lead to uncertainties, changes and potentially a few opportunities. This is not news, not industry specific and raising it this way does not make this group in any way more special than all of the others facing disruption.

    1. Rob D.
      Coat

      Re: Hmmm..

      Are those (few) opportunities available on this planet's surface by any chance?

      1. Stoneshop Silver badge
        Boffin

        Re: Hmmm..

        Are those (few) opportunities available on this planet's surface by any chance?

        I would expect the space industry to be eminently capable of finding those opportunities if they happen not to be on the surface of this planet.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge

      Re: Hmmm..

      The CBI's also said Brexit is bad, if that helps.

    3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Hmmm..

      "a few opportunities"

      Even insuperable opportunities.

    4. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Hmmm..

      and potentially a few opportunities.

      True, but it's worth thinking about what those opportunities might be. There will no doubt be some in subsitute products and services that are currently imports (fruit and veg, farm workers, hospital staff, etc.), some in taking, ahem, advantage of deregulation. But it also has to be remembered that the UK struggled to find many of those workers in the first place, which is why it accepted so many from the EU. So there will also be opportunities in circumventing any restrictions on migration and trade (smuggling especially across a putative leaky Eire / NI border), as well as providing alternative services: private medical and elderly care as the NHS and care homes struggle to find trained staff. In summary the opportunities are unlikely to be evenly spread or provide adequate replacements for any jobs lost. NB. this will apply to a lesser degree to the rest of the EU and we can expect the Germans particularly to finance schemes to soften the blow.

    5. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: Hmmm..

      >This is not news, not industry specific and raising it this way does not make this group in any way more special than all of the others facing disruption.

      Agreed, just that the Brexiteers are going la la la and the government is continuing to dig...

    6. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Hmmm..

      "Brexit is going to lead to uncertainties, changes and potentially a few opportunities. "

      Most of those opportunities are going to be for liquidators and asset strippers.

  10. JimmyPage Silver badge
    FAIL

    The key conclusion and recommendation of the committee was that government needs to act quickly to reach an agreement that preserves UK access to EU space programmes.

    Good luck with that ...

    1. codejunky Silver badge

      @ JimmyPage

      "Good luck with that ..."

      Well said. Why do we need to act? If the EU want to take away their toys in the hopes of having something to negotiate with that is legitimately up to them. It doesnt mean we have to go begging to go make their toys. If these businesses are dependent on the EU/public money as they are arguing then it is dependent on our spending priorities.

  11. mark l 2 Silver badge

    The government doesn't even know what it is going to do about VAT once we leave the EU, which will affect every business in the UK that does any sort of dealing with the EU, so it comes as no surprise that the space sector has been overlooked/

  12. Woodnag

    Good analysis:

    https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2018/04/hoisted-e-mail-brexit-security-uks-coming-poodledom.html

  13. Flak

    Not just the space sector....

    ... but everyone else, too.

    I know that at the last count only 48.1% would have agreed with me - I suspect the number is now greater.

    1. The Mighty Biff

      Re: Not just the space sector....

      Aye, that's what the people I know who voted for leave think. Or rather the opposite :) I haven't come across anyone that's changed their mind since the vote. If anything, opinions have become even more entrenched and there's even less desire for either side to think about why the other side voted the way they did.

      It appears that crowing at Loser Remoaners or calling Brexidiots a bunch of knuckledragging racists hasn't really helped... Who'd a thunk it?

      btw I'm not suggesting that you were doing that, just that it's commonplace - just read some of the comments on this article...

      1. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge

        Re: Not just the space sector....

        I haven't come across anyone that's changed their mind since the vote.

        Me neither. Some rather quickly admitted their vote to leave was just for a laugh or a protest vote and a few are still a bit confused about Farage saying "Wouldn't it be terrible if we were really like Norway and Switzerland?" when that apparently was never on the cards.

        But what has really changed the polled opinion is (1) those who did not vote now realising they don't like how things are going, and (2) those who were not old enough to have a vote now entitled to one.

        And, given the generalisation that older voters were for leaving and younger for staying; I would guess leaving has lost more votes than remaining in the last two years.

        1. rmason Silver badge

          Re: Not just the space sector....

          agree with @Jason Bloomberg

          They key was not and still is not who voted which way, it is and always will be those who just don't bother to vote. Ever. The "they're all bad, there's no point" brigade (often the most vocal complainers too!).

          I'd imagine/hope enough of those would get up and vote to make a difference. Should a second vote ever occur.

        2. Adam 52 Silver badge

          Re: Not just the space sector....

          Well my Brexit voting colleague has applied for Irish citizenship so that he still has the EU benefits he wants to deny the rest of us.

          1. MJI Silver badge

            Re: Not just the space sector....

            Let them know so they will reject him

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Not just the space sector....

              @Adam52; "Well my Brexit voting colleague has applied for Irish citizenship so that he still has the EU benefits he wants to deny the rest of us."

              @MJI; "Let them know so they will reject him"

              And if he moves on, be sure to keep an eye on him and let his colleagues at his new workplace know what sort of self-serving hypocrite they're dealing with as well. Especially if they've been shafted by Brexit.

              This type of playing-it-both-ways-I'm-Alright-Jack vermin deserves to be followed by his decision.

              That goes for if he moves to Ireland as well. I can't speak personally for- or guess the reaction of- the Irish themselves to this sort of behaviour in the light of the effect Brexit might have on them. However, I wouldn't appreciate it if I were in their position.

  14. NerryTutkins

    a pointless exercise

    Most can see that aside from some swivel-eyed loons in the Tory party who really would go full on hair-shirt hard brexit, the country will ultimately end up backing down and staying in the customs union and single market, or just cancelling brexit completely.

    Because the government has done nothing in terms of extending customs facilities at ports, hiring new staff, training companies how to fill in export paperwork, commissioning upgraded computer systems and so on. Which indicates that it has absolutely no intention of actually leaving and trading on WTO rules, and indeed, could not possibly do so because it hasn't got the facilities to, and it would take years to create them.

    But the two years of acting like twats, being rude to the rest of Europe, and threatening to take our ball with us is having real consequences, and will continue to do so after the strop ends and the UK reluctantly capitulates to common sense. Would outside investors ever feel safe putting a big investment in the UK, when there are still a lot of old racist people left to potentially decide to have another strop and flounce out again at the drop of a hat?

    1. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: a pointless exercise

      Which indicates that it has absolutely no intention of actually leaving

      I think you may be giving the government a little too much credit for competence here.

      1. imanidiot Silver badge

        Re: a pointless exercise

        Yes, because when high-up (their own arse) EU politicians like Timmermans and Juncker say your country will have to be made an example off and must under no circumstances have a chance of benefiting from leaving the Union (so as not to give other countries ideas) you have any other option BUT to take a hard line...

        Brexit is a mess, but it's not fair to blame just the British politicians or Leave voters. The EU is PURPOSEFULLY making it a mess.

        1. Lars Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: a pointless exercise

          "The EU is PURPOSEFULLY making it a mess".

          No it's not, There has to be a clear advantage of being a member compared to not being one, there will be no free ride regarding the advantages provided to the members. Just ask the 27 (Boris and May have been running around asking but seem to be a bit mum about it), this was agreed at the first meeting after the referendum and well known in advance too.

          Just common sense, no money no honey, as the girl said.

          PS. capital letters never work the way you think they work.

          1. codejunky Silver badge

            Re: a pointless exercise

            @ Lars

            "No it's not, There has to be a clear advantage of being a member compared to not being one"

            That is an often overlooked but very important point when looking at membership of the EU. In leaving the EU states clearly they must make it difficult and they must act against us to make sure we suffer, which is a clear demonstration that naturally it isnt. They have to make an effort to punish us. Their recent admission that leaving would give us a competitive advantage (by trying to force us to sign up to their rules so we dont have competitive advantage) further shows that they know out can be better than in.

            This is before looking at what very little the EU has to negotiate with in our leaving. We are leaving, and to fail that negotiation is to not leave, thats it. However the EU loses income, a portion of their 'empire', and a possible hole in their cartel border. It is not a shock that the EU is desperate to take away anything it can from the UK in hopes we will negotiate a bad deal (not leave).

            1. Alan Brown Silver badge

              Re: a pointless exercise

              "They have to make an effort to punish us. "

              Where "punishment" is "Stop allowing us to use the clubhouse" and "Stop bending over backwards to accommodate our demands"

              The EU has no interest or intent to impose actual penalties. All that will happen is that everything reverts to the "Non-member of the club" rules.

              1. codejunky Silver badge

                Re: a pointless exercise

                @ Alan Brown

                "The EU has no interest or intent to impose actual penalties"

                You may need to double check that. As I said there is little the EU can actually do to us which is why they are in a mad scramble to find anything to negotiate over. 70% of Euro clearing is done in London (a financial capital of the world) and the EU wants to impose rules to take that into the EU but want the Euro to be an international reserve currency. They want to punish UK banking trade into the EU (banks got around it) so badly they pissed off *the Swiss?* who were gonna give them bailout money for their failed currency area but put it on hold if the quid pro quo banking access was hit by the EU's poorly thought punishment rules. Now stopping us from paying and building for their projects.

                As they do keep saying, the UK must be punished, the UK must not be allowed to be seen to succeed outside the EU. Of course that is because others will probably follow.

        2. BinkyTheMagicPaperclip Silver badge

          Re: a pointless exercise

          Go on then, outline where the EU is being unreasonable, because I'm not seeing it so far.

          Most of this was known prior to the referendum, and the remainder was entirely predictable.

          Difficulties with customs, safety, hygiene, and tracking? All known about.

          Border in Ireland? Known about and repeatedly warned this would affect the peace process.

          Loss of financial passporting? Known

          Loss of EU organisations sited in the UK? Warned about, yet again.

          Affect on academia? Repeatedly warned by many scientists

          Impact on seasonal migration? Yep, government was warned.

          Suggestions this could affect EU originated nationals for healthcare etc - mentioned

          Farming hit? Apparently many farmers were stupid enough to vote to leave on the grounds the UK would treat them better. Private Eye certainly warned this was a dangerous assumption. Now, it's looking like the Eye is right, who would have thought it, given DEFRA (whatever it's called today)'s track record.

          (plus stuff like the car industry, drug certification, the likelihood of brexit actually increasing immigration from non EU countries, and food safety being eroded due to trade deals)

          ALL of this was mentioned prior to the referendum. Plenty of it on the BBC, not just the left leaning press. The government made no plans, and assumed they could muddle through.

          Now it's apparent that all the above will have to be dealt with. Cue a lack of surprise here.

        3. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: a pointless exercise

          "The EU is PURPOSEFULLY making it a mess."

          The EU doesn't need to. All it needs to do is sit back, not correct the UK government's mistakes and if they do appear to be doing things right, make a couple of provokative comments to put them back into headless chicken mode.

          All this, to appease the right wing extremists in the Tory party.

          1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
            Unhappy

            All this, to appease the right wing extremists in the Tory party.

            Exactly.

            This was only ever about a)Keeping the Conservative party together and b)Killing UKIP.

            And on those accounts it's been a massive success. UKIP looks like a hedgehog that's been gone over by an 18 wheeler.

            The UK Economy is simply "Collateral damage."

  15. stick it to the man

    The letter focuses on the clarity around Galileo (an EU funded project for ESA which itself is not an EU organisation). This is coming up due to EU suggestion that UK is a security risk. Seems somewhat disingenuous and if pursued there is suggested reciprocity in preventing Galileo infrastructure access in Falklands, Ascension Island and Diego Garcia.

    1. bobajob12

      Hollow threat though. Other EU member states have equatorial islands, and they would be more than happy to take a big chunk of EU money to build a spaceport. Dutch Antilles? French Caribbean? Their governments would be very happy to help.

  16. Mike Richards

    'Gyimah – who is Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation'

    Studied PPE at Oxford.

    So I'm looking forward to his insights into science, research and innovation.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: 'Gyimah – who is Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation'

      Studied PPE at Oxford.

      Not another one… is there anyone in the cabinet who didn't? Not sure if it matters what BoJo officially studied as he was too busy with the Bullingdon Club…

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: 'Gyimah – who is Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation'

        "Not sure if it matters what BoJo officially studied"

        Greats. So if we get into a dispute with Sparta and need to organise some hoplites, or if for that matter we want some info on 4th century BC Mediterranean agriculture, or even how to fight a war with the Gallic barbarians, he knows a thing or two,

        Anything after about 300AD, forget it.

        1. Stoneshop Silver badge
          Trollface

          Re: 'Gyimah – who is Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation'

          or if for that matter we want some info on 4th century BC Mediterranean agriculture

          's not going to help as I see it, rising temperatures notwithstanding. Anything from before the Industrial Revolution is bound to be rather labour intensive, and for that you would need East Europeans. Or whoever you lot can scrounge from your former colonies.

          or even how to fight a war with the Gallic barbarians, he knows a thing or two,

          They're just across the Channel; how difficult could that be?

          1. Roland6 Silver badge

            Re: 'Gyimah – who is Minister of State for Universities, Science, Research and Innovation'

            >They're just across the Channel; how difficult could that be?

            Well short of legging it through the channel tunnel, we'll need a few ships, not sure if we have any shipyards skilled in building trireme's, but that is probably putting the cart before the horse, as I doubt the UK has sufficient forests from which to gather the wood. Although give us another 50+ years and we should have sufficient oak to rebuild Nelson's fleet of 27 ships...

  17. Arthur the cat Silver badge

    ESA is not an EU organisation

    From the ESA web site:

    ESA is an intergovernmental organisation, whereas the EU is supranational. The two institutions have indeed different ranges of competences, different Member States and are governed by different rules and procedures.

    Therefore ESA membership has sod all to do with whether or not we're in the EU.

    1. Pier Reviewer

      Re: ESA is not an EU organisation

      Alas it does have an impact - the ESA has contracts with various businesses for goods and services. Some of those are in the U.K. post Brexit goods might be more expensive to shift betwixt the U.K. and the EU. There is currently no legal provision allowing the “trade” of services from outside the EU.

      Basically, nobody has a clue how business will be conducted between the U.K. and the EU. Contracts get sorted years in advance. At the moment nobody wants to risk signing multi million Euro contracts with U.K. businesses as they might not be able to carry them out. Ergo the U.K. space sector is out in the cold.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: ESA is not an EU organisation

      'I think you'll find it's a bit more complicated than that'... True that EU membership does not dictate ESA membership, however it does seem to have an impact on how contracts are carried out through ESA. Particularly as Galileo is EU funded. See the House of Lords notes:

      'The EU set the procurement rules for how Galileo should be procured in terms of industrial policy and access by third countries outside the EU … and ESA had to follow those rules'. Stuart Martin, CEO and Executive Director, Satellite Applications Catapult, cited the example of Canada, which funded some equipment development for Galileo but was subsequently excluded from bidding in the procurement phase.

      So it's also about the type and size of work we get and not just whether we are still a member.

    3. Lars Silver badge
      Happy

      Re: ESA is not an EU organisation

      With the UK outside of the EU the status of the UK will change for several reasons like:

      " Some 20 per cent of the funds managed by ESA now originate from the EU budget."

      Or if you use the Wikipedia you find apart from the obvious like:

      " The European Space Agency (ESA; French: Agence spatiale européenne, ASE;[4][5] German: Europäische Weltraumorganisation) is an intergovernmental organisation of 22 member states[6] dedicated to the exploration of space. Established in 1975 and headquartered in Paris, France, ESA has a worldwide staff of about 2,000[7] and an annual budget of about €5.25 billion / US$5.77 billion (2016)."

      But you also find this:

      "EU and the European Space Agency

      The political perspective of the European Union (EU) was to make ESA an agency of the EU by 2014,[66] although this date was not met. The EU is already the largest single donor to ESA's budget and non-ESA EU states are observers at ESA.".

      I have no doubt Britain will take part in the future too, but what has to happen first is that the clowns in and around No10 will have to sort out their red lines.

  18. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

    Why would the ESA want this?

    As the ESA web site says, "not all member countries of the European Union are members of ESA and not all ESA Member States are members of the EU. ESA is an entirely independent organisation although it maintains close ties with the EU through an ESA/EC Framework Agreement".

    The UK is the 4th biggest contributor to it, ESA gets 8.4% of it's budget from us, some 334 million (sorry, MEELLION) euros each year. Are they really going to wave goodbye to that in a fit of pique?

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Why would the ESA want this?

      The UK might get to stay in ESA but it might find itself restricted on what it has access to, especially anything that receives EU funding.

      Why is the EU doing this? Well, there might be genuine legal or security concerns, but the main reason is because it knows how to negotiate. Hardly suprising given the army of mandarins it has that do little else. And, given that the UK government's policy seems largely to be based about appeasing the hard-liners, also hardly surprising that the UK has no counter. All hail Captain Beaky!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Why would the ESA want this?

        The UK might get to stay in ESA but it might find itself restricted on what it has access to, especially anything that receives EU funding.

        Which would presumably apply to the other non-full members (like that well-known European state Canada!)

        it knows how to negotiate. Hardly suprising given the army of mandarins it has that do little else

        Ah, yes, EU negotiation. "Do it our way or else."

        1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

          Re: Why would the ESA want this?

          Ah, yes, EU negotiation. "Do it our way or else."

          Who asked to leave? And who still wants to trade with the EU? Negotiations are always give and take but even if the EU wasn't in the stronger position, it would help if the UK team turned up with a clear mandate on what they're allowed to negotiate on. Time is running out, particularly for the UK. Don't get any deal ratified before the end of the year and it will be an unholy mess.

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: Why would the ESA want this?

            it would help if the UK team turned up with a clear mandate on what they're allowed to negotiate on.

            Can't argue there. They should never have let May anywhere the negotiations.

            1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

              Re: Why would the ESA want this?

              They should never have let May anywhere the negotiations.

              This is an interesting argument from someone in favour of leaving. Isn't it just a strawman suggesting that the reason there are problems is because we don't have the right leader? Or do you mean only "true believers" should be involved? If so, well, Davis is leading the negotiations and making a hash of it. It's great when you've always got something else to blame as this also means never having to take responsibility. But claiming that it would only work if only the right people were doing it is more of the wishful thinking that was pushed in the referendum: ultimately successful but also responsible for the situation as it is now.

              Those of us who argued against a referendum in the first place and against interpreting it as an instruction to parliament argued precisely along these lines: the referendum should never be interpreted as policy and if so, it could only fail because the terms of leaving the EU were never the subject. Unfortunately the constitutional arguments were always bound to be drowned by the populist claims from those who want to travel but never arrive.

              1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

                Re: Why would the ESA want this?

                Isn't it just a strawman suggesting that the reason there are problems is because we don't have the right leader? Or do you mean only "true believers" should be involved?

                "true believers" tend to be very poor negotiators, I can't imagine anyone wanting Farage as negotiator, for example. As in poker, a good negotiator doesn't have to believe, they just have to convince their opponent that they believe. Theresa May could never convince anyone of that, she's too transparent, and although I think she was always a closet leaver she only "came out" when it was politically convenient.

                the referendum should never be interpreted as policy and if so, it could only fail because the terms of leaving the EU were never the subject.

                They couldn't be the subject, because it's a negotiation and the terms necessarily come later. All the referendum could do, and did, was ask "do you want us to negotiate our departure", and people said Yes.

                those who want to travel but never arrive.

                I'd say that for Brexit it's more the reverse, there are too many people who want to arrive without the pain of the journey, which is never going to happen. The next few years will be difficult, possibly painful, but I still hope they'll be worth it, if we work to make it so.

                Constantly rehashing the "if only" argment is counter-productive. Brexit will only succeed if everyone, remainers and leavers, works to make it so. I sincerely hope that remainers won't intentionally work to wreck it just to show they were right, it will be hard enough coping with that from the EU leadership.

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Why would the ESA want this?

                An awful lot of the leaver's arguments as to why Brexit is such a holy clusterfuck seem to revolve (swivel eyed brexiloons) around us remainers not being enthusiastic about leaving.

                Never let it be said that all leave voters are racist fuckwits or that they were misled though, there are definitely some who voted in full knowledge of what it meant, it's just the majority of them that are misinformed racist morons who have taken both barrels to their country's feet.

            2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
              Unhappy

              if the UK team turned up with a clear mandate on what they're allowed to negotiate on.

              If you approach the EU with "We want to leave. What deal will you give us" should you really be surprised if you hear the voice of Katt Williams saying "B**ch, I ain't giving you s**t*"

              *Especially if Mrs May has decided to take personal charge of the process.

              1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

                Re: if the UK team turned up with a clear mandate on what they're allowed to negotiate on.

                If you approach the EU with "We want to leave. What deal will you give us" should you really be surprised if you hear the voice of Katt Williams saying "B**ch, I ain't giving you s**t*"

                Which is why you should approach with "We've are going to leave, will you discuss some terms which can work out best for us both?" and hope for some willingness to do so. You don't ever ask someone to "give" you a deal as if it is a gift, that just leaves you under their control. Deals are negotiated.

                Unfortunately it is in the EU's best interest to see Brexit fail, because that might prevent anyone else having the same idea. This is why it is willing to play "ain't giving you s**t" hardball even if that means hurting itself, it's a survival issue. Ultimately the UK needs to be willing to walk away with no deal, and come back to discussions later if EU members become more flexible. If they don't, then so be it. The EU is only 27 countries out of almost 200. The UK is one of the G7 nations, 3 of the others are in the EU and 3 are not. The EU is far from the only game in town.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Why would the ESA want this?

          Re: "do it our way or else". A negotiator gets to say that when they have all the leverage, e.g. ten times the population, being the source of the lions' share of the funding etc. It's no different from what happens when say, your startup sells stuff to Apple.

          Britain had legitimate concerns that this was unfair and not helpful...but instead of having a government with balls to simultaneously put together a coalition of like-minded European reformers and stare down the domestic swivel-eyed loony fringe to make the system better from the inside, they threw it open to the demos and then walked away from the result.

          The EU is under no obligation to lift a finger to help us. And if a revolution occurs in Britain and an unambiguously pro-EU party should come into power, they are not likely to get an especially warm do-over from Brussels.

        3. Roland6 Silver badge

          Re: Why would the ESA want this?

          >Ah, yes, EU negotiation. "Do it our way or else."

          Obviously, not done much negotiation or poker playing then.

          One of the things, I love {ironic} about Brexit are the contradictions. On the one hand, people believe that the UK has wonderful negotiators that (post-Brexit) will be able to go out to the world and sign "do it our way" deals that are totally favourable to the UK. Yet, on the other hand, are totally unable to negotiate with the EU...

          If the UK government are unable to negotiate a good deal with the EU, it doesn't bode well for it's ability to negotiate good (to the UK) deals, post-Brexit.

          1. werdsmith Silver badge

            Re: Why would the ESA want this?

            Yet, on the other hand, are totally unable to negotiate with the EU...

            Because EU holds a hand of aces and UK have a 3 of hearts, a 5 of spades, an 8 of clubs and a 9 of diamonds.

            1. Roland6 Silver badge

              Re: Why would the ESA want this?

              Because EU holds a hand of aces and UK have a 3 of hearts, a 5 of spades, an 8 of clubs and a 9 of diamonds.

              Do they?

              As I said, you've obviously never participated in "life-and-death" sales negotiations or played high stakes poker - something most small businesses do most months; year-in-year-out...

              Thus I take the Brexiteer, stance over the EU as being indicative that they are born losers; enter a high-stakes poker game/sales situation thinking you have no cards of value and you will walk out either empty handed or shafted.

              1. Alan Brown Silver badge

                Re: Why would the ESA want this?

                > "life-and-death" sales negotiations or played high stakes poker - something most small businesses do most months; year-in-year-out...

                Businesses which live on this basis tend to die spectacularly.

                Successful business is all about _minimising_ risks.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re:Successful business is all about _minimising_ risks.

                  Depends how you define 'successful'.

                  For many corporates, the modern definition of 'successful' seems primarily to involve minimising the risk of the Directors and their mates getting caught with their hands in the cash box before outsiders spot what the bosses have been up to.

                  These are often the same Remuneration/Compensation Committees who have defined 'long term bonuses' as being measured over first(say) three years of product sales, in the ten or more years lifetime of a product whose profitability (or otherwise) will not become obvious for rather longer than three years. Complex financial derivatives and such.

                  And whilst there may arguably be good reason to reward corporate success via personal and individual payments to the Management, there seems very little chance of holding the Management personally and individually accountable when things go wrong.

                2. Roland6 Silver badge

                  Re: Why would the ESA want this?

                  >Businesses which live on this basis tend to die spectacularly.

                  >Successful business is all about _minimising_ risks.

                  Don't disagree. However, the reason why I explicitly referred to 'small' businesses, was that each negotiation tends to be more significant. As a contractor, each negotiation is about potentially delivering a revenue stream over a significant number of months, failure to achieve a desirable outcome within a relatively short timeframe can have negative consequences. Over my career, I have been involved in many negotiations where the outcome can guarantee the jobs and lifestyles of 40+ people for 2+ years, hence winning or losing has a significant impact on a small business.

                  Totally agree about minimising risks, as another commentor noted (https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/containing/3494524), use your brains and know when to play, when to take risks and when to fold and walk away.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Why would the ESA want this?

              Because EU holds a hand of aces and UK have a 3 of hearts, a 5 of spades, an 8 of clubs and a 9 of diamonds.

              At which point the obvious thing to do is fold and stop wasting any more of your time & money on them. You may be out of the game, but you'll be better off.

        4. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: Why would the ESA want this?

          Which would presumably apply to the other non-full members (like that well-known European state Canada!)

          It does - even Switzerland (that well known terrorist nation) doesn't have access to the secure part of Galileo

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Why would the ESA want this?

      Wow, so if we leave it for 52 years we'd have a year's worth of extra cash to put into the NHS?

      Don't forget, they need us more than we need them, they want to sell us their prosecco and cheese, it's not racist, it's just a coincidence that all the people they want out of the country happen to be foreign and of a darker skin shade and the wrong religion.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Why would the ESA want this?

        it's just a coincidence that all the people they want out of the country happen to be foreign and of a darker skin shade and the wrong religion.

        Sorry, were we talking about France?

  19. Hey Nonny Nonny Mouse

    Illogical captain

    "the fact the UK is leaving shows that something is not entirely right with the EU and that the EU needs some level of reform"

    I'm guessing that whoever said that isn't, despite their job at ESA, actually a rocket scientist.

    I certainly hope they're not responsible for anything that requires logical reasoning.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Illogical captain

      "I certainly hope they're not responsible for anything that requires logical reasoning."

      Or even anything that requires the distinction between the world of real objective facts and the crazy world of subjective overheated underpowered politicians imaginations.

    2. Alan Brown Silver badge

      Re: Illogical captain

      > I'm guessing that whoever said that isn't, despite their job at ESA, actually a rocket scientist.

      Most people aren't. The science part is easy, it's the engineering that's hard.

      That said, in any government or governmental organisation some level of reform is always needed and the UK is arguably worse than the EU in this respect. A report has just surfaced that HMRC refused to act on EU warrants to investigate money laundering due to the political donations and affliliations of the companies involved - then denied that they'd given this as the reason, then denied the denial.

      You couldn't make it up.

  20. StuntMisanthrope Bronze badge

    Space sector, who knew?

    ... I was going to leave it at that, but following Paperclip, there's a British thread all the way through Gemini, Apollo et al, regardless of making paper hats for satellites etc. We have some of the best STEM talent in the world,when are we going to get back to doing what we do best, regardless of the ESA...

    #werelookingforthepassword #protocolfollows

    1. allthecoolshortnamesweretaken

      Re: Space sector, who knew?

      _"We have some of the best STEM talent in the world,when are we going to get back to doing what we do best, regardless of the ESA..."_

      No bucks, no Buck Rogers. The talent will go where it will be funded.

    2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Space sector, who knew?

      We have some of the best STEM talent in the world,when are we going to get back to doing what we do best

      Keeping them in menial jobs for minimum pay because only PPE graduates can be bosses?

      Or exporting them to countries that actually invest in skills?

  21. amanfromMars 1 Silver badge

    For Miracles .... Head to the Private and Pirate Sectors for Vectors/Openings/Derivatives/Futures

    Top Gun for Hire? ........ https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2018/04/23/department_of_fun_advertises_for_data_strategy_head_knowledge_not_necessary/#c_3493447>

    And that is only just the Beginning.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    An entire thread an no one's mentioned the Russians yet?

    No doubt they're looking for collaboration into space R & D.

    Maybe that's what Johnny Deadwood (MP) means when referring to trade agreements with the rest of the world...

  23. Malcolm Weir Silver badge

    I find it odd that comment about Brits being denied access to certain EU work on the grounds of Brexit. That seems disingenuous when the EU's current position is 100% that *until* the UK leaves, EU rules laws apply (eg: EU citizens who move to the UK the day before Brexit should get the same rights as those here for years).

    So this looks like some EU organization (within ESA) asserting what was Ms May's position: the UK is now some kind of not-quite EU member, with different rules, while the rest of the EU is asserting the opposite.

    1. werdsmith Silver badge

      That seems disingenuous when the EU's current position is 100% that *until* the UK leaves, EU rules laws apply (eg: EU citizens who move to the UK the day before Brexit should get the same rights as those here for years).

      Nice idealism.

      But the reality is that people make organisational decisions with an eye on the future.

    2. BinkyTheMagicPaperclip Silver badge

      No, it's entirely accurate. The UK will have access to work that finishes before Brexit actually hits. Once Brexit is in place, the UK is not part of the EU, and does not meet the security standards that other EU members benefit from, so can't bid for the work.

      What's that? *All* the work, pretty much, extends beyond the Brexit date? Who could possibly have anticipated that, other than anyone with a clue?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Once Brexit is in place, the UK is not part of the EU,

        True

        and does not meet the security standards that other EU members benefit from, so can't bid for the work.

        Not true.

        How many times do people have to repeat it,: just because the EU requires that its members do something does not mean that non-members can't choose to do it if they want to.

        OK, bring on the downvotes from the brainwashed sheeple that think they can't do anything unless the EU allows them to.

        1. BinkyTheMagicPaperclip Silver badge

          Technically the EU *could* give the UK special snowflake terms where it's part of the information sharing and security schemes, and remain eligible to continue with various EU member only ESA projects including Galileo. They could overturn rules that EU projects have to be conducted by full EU members. Of course 'the EU' isn't Juncker, or Merkel, or Macron - it's the other 27 countries, some of which will decidedly not be on the UK's side, and a single one can veto changes.

          So you're asking for special conditions, despite the fact that Norway and Switzerland, which aren't full EU members but have their own unique arrangements aren't eligible either.

          Why should they?

          It's like signing up to play golf in a tournament at a golf club, where everyone has to bring in the right clubs and wear their special tie and shoes so as not to damage the green, but you decide that you want to play without being a member, using clubs no-one has checked, and wearing your trainers - which are 'just as good' as the green shoes (no, I don't play golf, can you tell?) that everyone else is wearing, and would involve the club going through a lot of hassle to let you in.

          Whilst you're faffing around with your trainees and your woggle, a lesser known member of the club says that they're perfectly willing to take your place, and they already have on their shoes, tie, and are carrying their shiny clubs. Which would you do - try the new member who appears to be trying hard, or the ex member who demands special treatment and is generally being a pain?

          Excuse me, I have a cough that sounds suspiciously like a laugh, but it isn't, honest.

          I look forward (no, not really) to the Brexit future where we can all eat our hormone stuffed beef burgers with pus filled milkshakes from the US, then when we fall ill go to our all but privatised American company hospital, and be treated by one of the many Indian doctors given British citizenship from the bilateral UK/India trade agreement, and the on-going dearth of EU medical staff (I have no problem with the doctors, incidentally, but when the trade agreement arranged by Priti Patel goes through I will laugh long and hard at the more racist Brexiteers' faces)

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            It's like signing up to play golf in a tournament at a golf club, where everyone has to bring in the right clubs and wear their special tie and shoes so as not to damage the green, but you decide that you want to play without being a member, using clubs no-one has checked, and wearing your trainers

            No, its the complete opposite of that. It's like wanting to play in a tournament but being told by the members that you can't play because you don't have the special clubs, tie and shoes bought from their pro's shop, even though you can buy exactly the same items, from the same manufacturer, online.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Indeed.

              But we didn't want to play by the rules of the club we joined, so we left.

              The grass at the imaginary golf club was apparently greener...

            2. BinkyTheMagicPaperclip Silver badge

              Well, no. You say the tie and trainers are the same. The manufacturer says they are. The club : disagrees. They set the rules, you knew that when you quit, and you're shit out of luck.

              Play by club rules or find your own club.

  24. Danny 5

    As expected

    Didn't need a crystal ball to figure out things like this were going to happen soon. I said it before, the EU is hurt by Brexit and hurt quite badly, but the UK is the party taking the biggest blows in this breakup.

    I wish the people in power had the presence of mind to say "ok people, the EU sucks, but leaving it sucks even worse, so let's be logical and overturn this idiotic decision."

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: As expected

      They are already happening, UK universities are being dropped from collaborations because nobody knows what the rules are going to be next year - which makes it rather tricky to plan long term programs.

    2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: As expected

      I wish the people in power had the presence of mind to say "ok people, the EU sucks, but leaving it sucks even worse, so let's be logical and overturn this idiotic decision."

      And I'm glad that arrogant people like you aren't in charge. Who the hell are you to tell people that they are idiots just because they took a choice that you disagree with?

      Let's assume that in the next election Corbyn wins, would you be happy for the Tories to say "let's be logical and overturn this idiotic decision."? We all know where that kind of politics ends up.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: As expected

        Absolutely. The voice of the people is what counts.

        So the sooner we move on to the next referendum to allow the people's voice to be heard, the better.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: As expected

          So the sooner we move on to the next referendum to allow the people's voice to be heard, the better.

          On what subject? Are you suggesting a second Bexit referendum? Let's say such a referendum votes "Stay", would we have another one in 2019 to check again? And 2020, 2021, 2022? What if the vote were "Leave" again? Last time people voted to leave, and in the election last year they voted mostly for parties that support leaving, when do we stop asking?

          It makes no sense to have a referendum every year on the same subject until we get the "right" answer by one group's reckoning.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: As expected

            On what subject?!?

            Err...whether the country as whole wants to crash and burn would be a good subject.

            Preferably before, rather than after.

            The main reason we got into the EU in the 70s was we were doing a pretty good job of burning on our own. Wanting to go back to those days isn't such a bright idea and warrants a referendum.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: As expected

              :The main reason we got into the EU in the 70s

              Not this again.

              We joined the EEC in the 1970s, that was a good thing on balance. We even voted in a referendum to stay.

              We joined the EU in 1992, despite public opinion being against it, with no referendum. Even the Europhile French only voted to enter by 51%. The Danes voted not to enter and had to be asked again before they got it "right".

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: As expected

                So your point is either we've been shafted by the politicians or we've been shafted by the politicians.

                Tell us something we don't know.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: As expected

        We all know where that kind of politics ends up.

        ----> 1 thumb up & 8 thumbs down

        Wow, 8 to 1 vote against democracy. Way to go, remainers.

  25. The Oncoming Scorn Silver badge
    Alien

    The Theme From 2001 Is Running Through My Head

    As I read this.

    Only instead of hearing "Also Sprach Zarathustra" I'm getting

    Zathras gone! Zathras warned Zathras, but Zathras never listened to Zathras. Zathras was quiet one in family.

    or quite possibly Zathura: A Space MisAdventure

  26. Big_Boomer Bronze badge

    Full steam ahead and damn the consequences

    Oh Brexit will happen, and if the Old White Rich Men living overseas who own our government have their way it will be a hard Brexit. We are most definitely going to get to live in "interesting times".

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Full steam ahead and damn the consequences

      Exactly.

      Vladimir must be rubbing his hands with glee.

      The British politicians are doing a better job of dividing and conquering than he could ever have hoped for.

      It's almost as if they're working for him...

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Work has already gone

    As many decisions now no longer include the UK the tap has already been turned off. The damage from this is nicely deferred though as space missions take so long to design, procure, and operate.

    The deferral of this damage will not be apparent to those constantly poring over this year's trading data as existing commitments still have to be completed.

    This is the same as choosing not to plant next years crops, while the minister says you will have plenty of food on your table today.

  28. HmmmYes Silver badge

    Putting side Brexit and all that.

    Why does it kill UK space program?

    Space launches have shifted from state sponsored and into the private - look at how mcuh it costs to put a small satellite in space.

    State space programmes have proved themselves to be nothing more than pissing money down the drain.

    EU stuff like Galilleo were 'Me too' projects that failed.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Because the state projects keep your R&D infrastructure busy while you compete for the commercial contracts.

      Boeing may have the resources to keep 1000 rocket scientists employed between the end of one project and the start of the next but I doubt that Surrey Satellite Tech does

  29. MJI Silver badge

    Brexshit WILL be a disaster.

    They all keep on about better trade agreements, best offer is same as we have in EU.

    Lots of businesses will up sticks and move.

    The EU WILL give grants to build new car factories in Eastern Europe for the Japanese manufactures to move to.

    Lots of young people are looking to move over with the jobs.

    Already been a few financial sector leaving parties as they head off to Dublin and Amsterdam.

    Also I have noticed that quite a few leave voters have no idea why they voted out, one was worried about his job being given away to a foreigner (job is safe silly reason), anothe because we were NOT Shengen and Euro (WTF).

    My personal view better to be in pissing out. Yes EU is bloated, but think of the trade, think what WAS the EU financial capital.

    1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Brexshit WILL be a disaster.

      Lots of young people are looking to move over with the jobs.

      If the Eu really wanted to stuff Britain this would be a clever move.

      The Eu invent an Eu citizenship that gives them the same rights to live/work in any Eu 27 that they currently have - and offers it to any UK STEM graduate under 25, or PhD under 30

      Then everybody is happy, all the young people that voted to remain can move to the Eu. Berlin's startups ,Frankfurt's banks and ESA get all the developers and rocket scientists that they need, old people in the UK get to have Brexit free of all those remoaner young people.

  30. charlieboywoof
    Pint

    BS

    My gravy train detector has just exploded.

  31. Wobbly World

    The only thing that change's is the enemy. . .

    The menace of Brexit in this country will remain a menace until the British people make themselves aware of the techniques of Brexit. One who truly understands what it really is can't be taken in by it. Yet the individual is handicapped by coming face to face with a conspiracy so monstrous they cannot believe it exists. The British mind simply has not come to a realization of the evil which has been introduced into our midst. It rejects even the assumption that human creatures could espouse a philosophy which must ultimately destroy all that is good and decent.!!??

    [ With special thanks to John Edgar Hoover (August 1956) Bless!! DhOoooooo!!! ]

  32. Wellyboot Silver badge
    Meh

    Brexit is a popcorn & beer event for most non EU countries

    I'm not surprised that the leave voters are spread across a wide range of positions, they agree only on 'leave' as opposed to 'stay' during the referendum. 'Stay' voters were basically voting for no change, carry on as before.

    Facts (aka truth) are the first casualty of spin in any political event.

    Just as many voters turned out for the referendum as any recent general election - All the parties and 99% of the general public are quite happy to accept general election results. (The voters have spoken)

    It follows that any arguments of 'Non binding vote' or 'another vote' don't cut any ice, its the same electorate being given an A or B choice. If the politcos don't like the answer – Tough, get on with it or step down (Ex PM did just that), the alternative is to prove we're not a real democracy and wait for the revolution. (many of our rights were granted to prevent a sudden increase in rope usage by the unwashed masses)

    The tory referendum promise was a simple election manoeuvre to kneecap the kippers and keep voters on side. (fair enough, they all do it) but forgetting that national votes really are serious events.

    The current car crash situation exists because the previous PM & co. believed that their 'in' stance was representative of the country at large and so did zero planning for the other possible outcome as evidenced by the events since. You can't plan, prepare and execute all project phases simultaneously as is being attempted now with the aggravating factors of a ticking clock and the EU not being best pleased that we've given them the Agincourt salute (again)

    This is pure conjecture now –

    As there wasn't any prior impartial analysis of how the mere fact we were actually voting would change the future UK/EU relationship we missed out on an interesting debate.

    It's almost without doubt that a 'stay' would have ended the standard UK negotiating position of 'Brits won't wear paragraph 123, give us another treaty opt out please'.

    Would the EU federalists have taken a UK 'stay' vote as an affirmation of the grand plan by the most awkward team member and pressed for full unification?

    Discuss :)

    1. ArrZarr Silver badge

      Re: Brexit is a popcorn & beer event for most non EU countries

      "The current car crash situation exists because the previous PM & co. believed that their 'in' stance was representative of the country at large and so did zero planning for the other possible outcome"

      If somebody else tells me that they have an incredibly stupid idea which is now going to be put to a public vote, the onus of coming up with a plan is on that person. If they win, then you stand down and wander off to grab your popcorn.

  33. Alistair Thomas

    What is all the fuss about?

    As in most things EU, the UK is a massive contributor in this area. We're locked into our commitments until the end of the financial cycle anyway, but is it so bad to review this?

    We put in a certain amount, what do we get back? Is it worth it? Could we invest the same or even more with different partners and get better results? Is the EU looking for non-EU partners in this type of venture and if not, why not? Do key players in the Commonwealth have a space/sat communications programme, or are they singularly or collectively part of something bigger? Could we follow suit?

    Why do the doom-mongers and nay-sayers assume that Brexit means cancelling everything good we 've ever done? Why can't it mean being smarter with our money than just going along with the EU herd? If sticking with the EU herd is the best option after review then why would they want to lose a significant contributor? Too much emotion and too little business sense characterises debate in this area and the while Brexit shambles.

    Is this cherry picking? Too right. The EU wastes vast amounts of its citizens' money and it's past time that all EU members started cherry picking the bits that work and binning the bits that don't. It's called scrutiny; holding the ruling elite to account. The whole of Europe could do with a little more accountability.

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