back to article Ongoing game of Galileo chicken goes up a notch as the UK talks refunds

The Galileo "Yo Momma"-style war of words got angrier today with the UK threatening to recover its investment in the EU's space satellite project if the nation is booted out post-Brexit. In a technical note, UK participation in Galileo (PDF), which is best read out loud in a high-pitched warbly voice, British officials again …

  1. ArrZarr Silver badge
    Joke

    The story so far:

    1. UK pisses and moans about EU

    2. EU gets sick of UK

    3. UK decides to leave the EU

    4. UK tries to take it's ball with it

    5. EU points out that it's not the UK's ball

    6. GOTO 4

    1. caffeine addict Silver badge

      Except that one hexagon of the leather (and the rubber beneath it) does belong to the UK.

      The UK would quite like to either have someone pay for it's bit of the ball, or to have access rights to use the ball in the future. Oh, and it currently owns the jumpers (Falklands/Ascension) that make up one of the goal posts that the EU would like to keep using.

      Your joke doesn't work so well any more, does it?

      [ In this case, I mean. In general the Brexit response has been pretty close to what you wrote. :/ ]

      1. SuccessCase

        “Except that one hexagon of the leather (and the rubber beneath it) does belong to the UK”

        Sorry to be pedantic, but the classic white football with black patches has about 30 pentagonal patches. So with the UK contributing 10% of the Galileo project funds, amounts to 3 patches. Actually look at the classic football and you will see that doesn’t quite represent the same stark mental image of insignificant isolation as your assertion suggests.

      2. tin 2

        If you join a football club, and pay fees, and the club purchases a ball with some of those fees, and then you leave the club, the club owns the ball. Surely.

        1. I ain't Spartacus Gold badge

          If you join a football club, and pay fees, and the club purchases a ball with some of those fees, and then you leave the club, the club owns the ball. Surely.

          This is indeed true.

          However, there's quite a big but involved in this. We've just agreed £35 billion-odd to cover leaving costs (mostly made up of unapid but previously agreed EU expenditure). However if we're part of a club, and those are paid out of the dues - why would be still liable if we're no longer members of the club?

          In fact legally we're not. Though morally we're on the hook for the pensions of EU civil servants and there were some 30-year loan guarantees to Ukraine that we're probably on the hook for.

          Anyway we agreed to pay as it's fair to do so, and we want future cooperation and agreements. Funny how the attitude changes when it's stuff we're owed... But equally the EU massively criticised the UK government for even hinting that giving us a bad deal would effect the future security relationship - where even the EU admit that we contribute more than others. And now it's them that are damaging the future security deal - which was so sacred a few months ago?

          We've also been told to stop cooperating in EU joint military missions, even though most of them are headquartered in the UK. Because we're allowed to participate, but apparently not to be trusted to lead. However the rest of the EU don't have (read have refused to commit) the HQ capacity to take up the slack. I rather suspect this is the Commission leading with its size 12s and not its brain, because the negotiations on future security got bizarrely delayed until after the money was sorted out, rather than being done in parallel.

        2. rg287 Bronze badge

          If you join a football club, and pay fees, and the club purchases a ball with some of those fees, and then you leave the club, the club owns the ball. Surely.

          True enough, but the irony here is that the EU is still hoping that despite not being a member of the club we'll still turn up and play in defence for them in the NATO League (namely covering the GIUK Gap and NUK Gap to the North Sea), but doesn't consider us trustworthy enough to actually handle their ball in the process, with the result that we might end up watching the Russian Northern Fleet sail down the North Sea to Germany ball sail into the goal because we weren't allowed to touch it (but we could have blocked it).

        3. SundogUK

          The UK bought 12% of the club...

    2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      If paragraphs 4 and 5 of the original article are correct, then there is a step 3a whereby the ball is placed under a separate agreement.

      Other than that, all of this seems to be rather predictably heading in the direction of a hard and acrimonious Brexit, which is what anyone who knows both sides could have predicted ages ago. David Cameron should have triggered article 50 on the Friday, like he promised too. Had he done so, we'd have been just as prepared as we are going to be in any case, and we'd have suffered a couple of years less uncertainty.

    3. Mark 85 Silver badge

      I think there's a step 5a needed: "UK will threaten to hold it's breath until it turns blue".

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        FTFY...

        I think there's a step 5a needed: "UK will threaten to hold it's breath until its passports turn blue".

    4. davep45

      Or more accurately..

      1. UK pisses and moans about the fundamental flaws in the EU

      2. EU gets sick of UK pointing out the obvious

      3. UK decides to leave the EU

      4. UK tries to come to sensible agreement to the benefit of all parties

      5. EU decides to make things difficult in case anyone else realises that leaving the EU is actually a good idea

      6. GOTO 4

      1. Ken 16 Silver badge
        Facepalm

        Re: Or more accurately..

        You can delete #2 or end it after 5 words, it's not relevant, the EU has been sick of the UK for many years without ever suggesting that they leave.

        #4 needs to redefine "sensible" and "both parties" as their opposites.

        The EU is 27 different countries with a very complicated interlocking set of treaties and obligations. Change any one of those and the others are open to negotiation, which takes about 10 years to make sure that it's actually agreed by everyone and not a passing whim.

      2. Smooth Newt
        Meh

        Re: Or more accurately..

        4. UK tries to come to sensible agreement to the benefit of all parties

        Who could possibly not want sensible? It's like motherhood and apple pie.

        The problem of course is that "sensible" is such a loaded word. What is "sensible" depends on where you are standing. As far as the EU is concerned, the UK agreed that third countries should not be allowed to develop the system or have privileged access to it, then decided to become a third country and now wants to renege on that agreement.

        As far as the UK is concerned, it paid towards it, so it should use it.

        But in most negotiations, including Brexit, the party with the biggest stick wins. So from all that has happened so far in the Brexit negotiations, the UK will huff and it will puff, and then accept the EU decision. That's what the sovereignty that the Brexiters want actually means - the EU, the US, and China get to shit on us, and we get to shit on Tuvalu and Tonga.

      3. Avatar of They
        FAIL

        Re: Or more accurately..

        Except the UK didn't try and come to sensible agreement, David Cameron whinged - a lot (he even argued about the EU wording in the charter FFS). Mostly to look good to his own party and the other 27 nations just carried on like they do. We are not special in the EU we are one country with the same rights as 27 others.

        Still amazes me how brexiteers think the other 27 nations have to listen to our demands at all. And remember lobbying in other countries to get the contracts we used to enjoy is making negotiations tricky, to them it is a windfall because they no longer need to compete with us.

        We voted to leave (stupidly in my opinion but there you go) because media made it about NHS money (that has been confirmed as not happening) and immigration (which is actually harming us in certain industries). And absolutely nothing else of fact came out of both sides during the run up to the vote making the whole thing a mess.

        Now people are whinging when the EU is doing exactly what the EU would do if people thought logically. When you close a door things need to be brought in from the cold so you keep ownership. So now we have the 90% drop in foreign investment, the EU money house leaving, the EU medicines center leaving, Galileo kicking us out and a host of other critical things like the NI border imposition. All predictable. But still media peddle the line that we are somehow owed something for when we were at the big table.

        But look at it another way. If this was a divorce you wouldn't still expect access rights to your ex-wifes computer you paid for when you were married? You would accept the loss and move on.

        If we were still in this wouldn't be an issue and countries outside the EU would be having these discussions but no one would care, we would be simply stating they are none EU etc.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Or more accurately..

          "We are not special in the EU we are one country with the same rights as 27 others."

          After years of winging the UK does have a slightly better deal in various areas, compared to other EU members (eg, we never even had to join the Euro because we got in a huff about it), so the country currently doing best out of being in the the EU is in fact, Britain.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      We paid in, we should retain assets.

      For Brexit, simply put, we paid into the EU, we should keep our fair share of the assets when we leave.

      The negotiations should have started off with the UK asking for a list of the shared assets, along with audited accounts for the last 50ish years. But since we are so far down the path, we have little negotiating power left.

      For the Galileo project, this is something separate, and it is no different than any other business project, if your partners kick you out, they must pay... How the government enters deals without these situations covered in the contracts is beyond me...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Apparently someone, not naming names*

        insisted from the beginning that 3rd countries weren't to be allowed access to any parts of the programme containing sensitive technology, because it said it had the best military technology and didn't want any of it being leaked to dodgy regimes who might be willing to pay cash for it instead.

        *looking at you, Britain

      2. Trigonoceps occipitalis

        Re: We paid in, we should retain assets.

        " audited accounts for the last 50ish years"

        If you mean audited and signed off as a true reflection of events, good luck with that.

    6. Addanc

      The EU 27 run a 70+ billion pound surplus with the UK; take Germany out of the picture and the UK pays in more than the other 26 together; when the cash cow UK leaves, the club will probably become insolvent.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        The EU 27 run a 70+ billion pound surplus with the UK; take Germany out of the picture and the UK pays in more than the other 26 together; when the UK leaves, the club will probably become insolvent.

        Let us assume that you and all the others who voice similar sentiments are correct and "The club becomes insolvent" - what is the great Brexit game plan? There surely must be one because so many leading Brexiteers harped on about how strong the UK's hand was - or was it to simply sit and gloat - we might be going down but so are they?

        1. codejunky Silver badge

          @ Roland6

          "Let us assume that you and all the others who voice similar sentiments are correct and "The club becomes insolvent""

          I would like to point out the Italians are looking to run a parallel currency to the Euro because of this kind of problem.

          "what is the great Brexit game plan?"

          The UK by proximity and the size of the EU will be affected by what happens in the EU good or bad. That is regardless of being in or out of the EU, but the extent at which the EU affects us and so can damage this country is based on how dependent we are on them. When we have given our sovereignty especially on issues such as trade and regulation we are strongly tied to them and cut off from the world due to high tariffs. Become more integrated with the world and that danger reduces as well as the economic advantages of being outside it.

          "There surely must be one because so many leading Brexiteers harped on about how strong the UK's hand was"

          We do have a strong hand. We can leave and the EU cant stop us or do a damned thing about it. Leaving by itself allows us to gain a competitive advantage (the EU recognises) and opens us up to world trade in ways the EU restricts.

          1. Roland6 Silver badge

            Re: @ Roland6

            "The UK by proximity and the size of the EU will be affected by what happens in the EU good or bad."

            My point, one of the omissions from the UK debate was (and is) this consideration. The "best deal" is the deal both sides walk away having warmly shaken hands, each thinking they got a good deal. Unfortunately, for this to happen you tend to have to schmooze and not insult each other...

            So whilst I get the reasons for Brexit (and may not agree), I do think our leaders and rabble-rousers, have let us down - I suspect we will only know just how bad the situation is after 11pm on the 29th March 2019...

            1. SImon Hobson Silver badge

              Re: @ Roland6

              Unfortunately, for this to happen you tend to have to schmooze and not insult each other...

              And unfortunately such schmoozing was never going to happen. It was clear from the outset that "the EU position"* was going to be "we'll do anything we can, even if it hurts us badly, to make it painful for the UK". Given that "the other side" has taken up a position of "we aren't interested in any agreement that doesn't punish you for leaving" - hard to see how any sensible agreement could be likely.

              * Based on statements made by senior EU bods

              1. Roland6 Silver badge

                Re: @ Roland6

                "hard to see how any sensible agreement could be likely."

                Agree, hence why my position was and still is: the best way to leave is to remain...

                By invoking Article 50 and it's exit only conveyor belt, the UK gave the other members the ball and the bat...

                The {ironic} laugh is that Camerons 'deal' would have probably enabled the UK in a few years to split the EU, as it gave power to many of the smaller states, who currently have to follow the direction set by the inner circle. Additionally, as we are beginning to see in Denmark and Italy, forces similar to those in the UK, which in time will cause the EU project to change direction.

  2. Pascal Monett Silver badge

    "the UK again reiterated its position on the project"

    We are so glad you did. We might have been afraid we didn't get it the first time but, then again, we have people who know how to read.

    In other words, you are not Trump and repeating your opinion endlessly does not make it any more relevant.

    1. Chronos Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: "the UK again reiterated its position on the project"

      In other words, you are not Trump and repeating your opinion endlessly does not make it any more relevant.

      But we do that impression so well, don't we? I mean, come on, Boris is so close with the hair and vacant expression, even if his accent is a bit Etonian, that they could almost be body doubles for each other.

      It's embarrassing, it really is. Globally embarrassing.

      Why is there no clown icon? Or better still, a clown car with wobbly wheels, the doors falling off and steam coming out of the radiator. That would seem to me to be an apt metaphor for the current situation.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "the UK again reiterated its position on the project"

        If the clown car is then seen driving off a cliff, absolutely yes.

        1. Hey Nonny Nonny Mouse

          Re: "the UK again reiterated its position on the project"

          With the narrativium dictated explosion and solitary wheel bouncing off toward the horizon.

        2. Alan Brown Silver badge

          Re: "the UK again reiterated its position on the project"

          If it's driving off a Cliff surely it should be a clown double decker bus?

          1. The March Hare
            Happy

            Re: "the UK again reiterated its position on the project"

            Yay! I got the reference... Vivian ...

  3. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge

    Ever since I resigned my membership of the local gym it has been a nightmare to get in and use their equipment. I have to suffer awkward receptionists, "computer says no", and just plain "fuck off" at times. Still, the wrestling with security as they haul me out is building core strength.

    I pointed out that I had paid them hundreds of pounds in membership fees over the years and, if they were not going to let me in, they must return that money. Again they said "fuck off". It is exasperating.

    I tried explaining "you need me more than I need you" but they seem to believe that is for them to decide and told me to "fuck off" again. I tried escalating the issue but was less than impressed when the Managing Director said "you're a fucking idiot" to my face.

    This is getting nearly as bad as the wife and kids hanging up on me every time I call since I told them I wanted them out of my life.

    Some people don't seem to know how things are meant to work. I keep trying to explain it to them but I am just meeting a wall of "fuck off", "grow up", and insults whenever I tell them I voted for brexit and I'm not stupid.

    I am probably going to have to take this all the way to the European Court of Justice. I feel so let down at present.

    1. Teiwaz Silver badge

      @Jason Bloomberg

      Ever since I resigned my membership of the local gym it has been a nightmare to get in and use their equipment.....

      Masterful piece....I wish I had more to upvote.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      You mean you were only a member of your gym? - I helped build mine and put in most of the money.

      Then the other f*ckers (to use your language) invited a load of their poor relatives along and told me I had to pay the lion's share for a bigger pool because I had more money than them. I couldn't believe it when they started telling me I had to had to let them and their mates use my house for parties.

      Then one of them invited a load of people they'd never met before who started upsetting my family, but the others insisted that because they were mates of mates, I had to let them use my house too.

      Then they started telling me they didn't like the rules in my house and I had to follow *their* rules.

      Eventually I told them to f*ck off and I'll damn well take my share of the gym. Then they can do whatever they like and I'll build my own next time. Once bitten, twice shy.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        But the bit of the gym you sawed off and towed away was the lavatory block. And it hadn't been cleaned either. Oh no.

      2. Smooth Newt
        Meh

        Poor relatives

        Then the other f*ckers (to use your language) invited a load of their poor relatives along and told me I had to pay the lion's share for a bigger pool because I had more money than them. I couldn't believe it when they started telling me I had to had to let them and their mates use my house for parties.

        We were the "poor relative" when we joined, described at the time as the Sick Man of Europe.

        And you conveniently forget that existing EU rules allow states to deport citizens from other EU countries if they have become a burden on the welfare system of the state.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I pointed out that I had paid them hundreds of pounds in membership fees over the years and, if they were not going to let me in, they must return that money. Again they said "fuck off". It is exasperating.

      but did you take the content of your locker with you? Are you trying to get said contents back?

      You would expect the contents of your locker or money to the value of it would you not?

      1. Frenchie Lad

        How much is an old jock strap worth then?

        1. Danny 14 Silver badge

          was some of the gym built on land you own? Was it under the same agreement of "we can use this and you can use that"?

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I pointed out that I had paid them hundreds of pounds in membership fees over the years and, if they were not going to let me in, they must return that money.

      Which would be ludicrous, of course.

      However the Galileo situation is more that they asked you to help pay installments for some new equipment which you could use, and they've now said that since you're leaving they won't let you use it, but they still intend to take the installments.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "Ever since I resigned my membership of the local gym it has been a nightmare to get in and use their equipment. "

      Bad analogy, the EU is not independent from the countries that join it, the countries are more like shareholders or partners.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        >the countries are more like shareholders or partners.

        But the EU is unlisted so the 'shares' aren't tradable and are only worth what the other shareholders/partners say they are worth.

    6. rg287 Bronze badge

      Ever since I resigned my membership of the local gym it has been a nightmare to get in and use their equipment. I have to suffer awkward receptionists, "computer says no", and just plain "fuck off" at times. Still, the wrestling with security as they haul me out is building core strength.

      I pointed out that I had paid them hundreds of pounds in membership fees over the years and, if they were not going to let me in, they must return that money. Again they said "fuck off". It is exasperating.

      A better example might be that although your membership of the gym is expired, you're still partly responsible for providing the gym's security through a separate contract. Whilst you have no right to use the equipment, they're all put out of joint that you left and won't let you carry one of their site radios, access the security office or monitor the CCTV - because you, the security guard, are not a gym member and thus considered a security risk (if that makes no sense, then you're correct. If you think that automatically trusting gym members simply because they're members is stupid and ignores "insider threats", then you're also correct.).

      You paid 10% of the installation costs on the CCTV and radio and not having access to it harms their security as much as yours. But you're an untrusted third party who they have trusted with their security, so no bueno.

    7. jeffdyer

      Bad analogy. More like a shareholding director in the gym business, who wants a fair return on the investment they've put into the gym.

  4. Teiwaz Silver badge

    Plane tiresome.

    Wasn't Boris complaining of not having a plane of his own so he could take his shoes and socks of on board without people wrinkling their noses in disgust.

    And still the idea that the UK could roll it's own Satnav system persists in high circles.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Plane tiresome.

      "And still the idea that the UK could roll it's own Satnav system persists in high circles."

      We already have the capability to build one and I'm sure our new best friends in India would launch them for a few considerations.

      1. Mark Dempster

        Re: Plane tiresome.

        >We already have the capability to build one and I'm sure our new best friends in India would launch them for a few considerations.<

        Absolutely. And it would only cost about 50 times what we're paying now, too.

    2. fixit_f

      Re: Plane tiresome.

      We're more than capable of making our own satnav system. Assuming said satnav system is a badly drawn map on a sheet of A4 with "you are here" written on it.

  5. Lee D Silver badge

    Well, OBVIOUSLY, all the money we paid was subject to a signed contract between the UK and EU that if either party pulled out, the other would refund their investment, right? I mean we wouldn't leave something as obvious as an exit clause out of a major international co-operative contract, right? So all we have to do is point at the line on the contract and say "Gimme"?

    We'll have this wrapped up by lunchtime.

    1. Frenchie Lad

      Ever heard of a gentleman's agreement ? Except of course there are no gents left now.

      1. Lee D Silver badge

        Yes.

        And I would not, for a billion pounds, rely on a gentleman's agreement for an international co-operative effort with a dozen other countries that I was about to piss off.

        Gentleman's agreements are for personal favours, not billions of taxpayers money spent on a international satellite network.

        Would you accept a gentleman's agreement from Trump?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          "Would you accept a gentleman's agreement from Trump?"

          Obviously not, for a gentleman's agreement to work both parties need to be gentlemen, it won't work if one or both are raving shitgibbons so that also rules out most of the current government, most of the piss poor no opposition party (what's that? Lib Dem? They're not still a thing are they?) and that curious bunch of 'back to their racist roots' people from the party formally (still?) run by Nigel Fuerhage and Aryan Banks.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Surprised that it needs pointing out, but gentlemen don't grab women by the pussy.

      2. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

        Of course there are plenty of Gents left now. Our nearest one is in town, by the roundabout, next to the Ladies. And they charge 20p to let you in.

  6. Mr Dogshit

    It'll be worth it

    We're going to regain our sovereignty. And the NHS will get an extra £350 million pounds a week, don't forget.

    1. caffeine addict Silver badge

      Re: It'll be worth it

      Urg... I don't get why that myth persists.

      If your other half said "we spend £100 a week down the pub. Let's go on a nice holiday instead" few people would assume that to mean exactly £5200 for a better holiday.

      1. Mr Gullible

        Re: It'll be worth it

        In my house I would expect said sacrifice to result in a weekend in a b&b in Bognor and to find my wife's wardrobe bulging with new shoes at the end of the year

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It'll be worth it

      And the NHS will get an extra £350 million pounds a week, don't forget.

      that is such a tired quote.. the bus said £350M a week? lets fund the NHS instead....

      Just because one or two idiots misquoted its meaning and were corrected, it did not mean the NHS were going to get £305M a week

      1. caffeine addict Silver badge

        Re: It'll be worth it

        Thanks anon coward - I was starting to think I was the only one who could read.

      2. Rob D.
        Trollface

        Re: It'll be worth it

        > Just because one or two idiots misquoted its meaning and were corrected, it did not mean the NHS were going to get £305M (sic) a week

        Too right - idiots, the lot of them; how could they possibly have misunderstood it so badly? That bus-based message was always having to be clarified as £350m a week EACH for the NHS, and for the police, and for education, and for pot holes, and for whatever else it was that was catching the eye of an under-informed voter or two at the time. That money coming back from the EU would be so much better than any other money the government would have post-Brexit because it was going to appear in the national coffers with absolutely no drawbacks at all and it could be spent multiple times.

        Glorious cake-and-eat-it money.

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: It'll be worth it

          We send far more than £350m a week to Westminister - so if England leaves the UK we can spend £Bn on the NHS - simple really

      3. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

        Re: It'll be worth it

        @AC

        No, the implication was very clear - instead of the EU lets fund the NHS.

        Or did they mean lets give the NHS an extra £5 a week, and spend the rest on tax-cuts for hedge-fund managers? Or £10 for the NHS and £349,999,990 per week to the DUP bribe fund?

        Surely you're not saying that Leave slogans were meaningless and worthless? Heaven forfend!

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: It'll be worth it

          Surely you're not saying that Leave slogans were meaningless and worthless?

          The remain ones were too, fair's fair!

      4. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: It'll be worth it

        Just because one or two idiots misquoted its meaning and were corrected, it did not mean the NHS were going to get £305M a week

        It was designed to be mis-interpreted as 'NHS could have £350M a week' that was the whole point of the advert.

        It wasn't aimed at the truth, it was aimed to persuade voters the NHS would be better funded if the UK exited the EU. i.e a lie.

        It's not a tired old quote, it was dead from the moment it was 'born', people just cart the corpse around to remind the guilty.

        1. Danny 14 Silver badge

          Re: It'll be worth it

          actually, if I said I wasnt going to the pub in order to go on a big holiday then thats exactly what id expect to happen. What I would expect to happen is;

          Well when I said £100 a week at the pub, what I really meant was I spent £20 a week diesel, insurance and tax and some of that is used going to the pub. I also spend £10 a week on clothes, some of those are also used by me going to the pub. I also use my mobile phone at the pub and that is £10 a week. Not forgetting my house that I go back to after the pub, that costs me £50 a week. Then there is the £10 I spend at the pub. So I get £520 back for not actually going to the pub.

          1. jeffdyer

            Re: It'll be worth it

            You drive a diesel to the pub? Oh dear.

      5. Mark Dempster

        Re: It'll be worth it

        >Just because one or two idiots misquoted its meaning and were corrected, it did not mean the NHS were going to get £350M a week<

        Boris said it did. On live TV, while sat on the bus.

        Surely he wasn't lying?

    3. Conrad Longmore
      Thumb Up

      Re: It'll be worth it

      And we'll be getting our Prawn Cocktail crisps back.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: It'll be worth it

      One of the Project Fantasy lot - I forget exactly who but I think the ones told to stop using Institute in their name because they weren't - reckoned that brexit could make us £150 billion a year better off.

      That's £3 billion a week which is even better bollocks that the £350 million a week promised on the side of the bus.

  7. Christoph Silver badge

    If the EU doesn't cave in and do exactly what we want

    We'll thcream and we'll thcream until we're thick!

    1. Frenchie Lad

      Re: If the EU doesn't cave in and do exactly what we want

      You guys are so parochial.

      If you calculate both sides of the economic equation the EU is on a hiding to nothing and it knows it. The Irish border is just the icing on the cake. The UK won't give up sovereignty, so it will end up with the EU having to accept a free way into the EU or risk bringing down the Good Friday Agreement.

      You should learn from Trump, unpredictable as he is, but the Yanks are gunning for the German car industry step by step and it started so innocently with DieselGate and now pernicious duties on car imports [If I were Germany I'd demand again my gold reserves back to calm the Americans]. The UK can and probably will do the same to car imports if it feels that it's got a bad Brexit deal. The latest preliminaries in the next EU budget planning are already trying to square a round hole - the member states will be squabbling openly before very long. Let the Limeys just sit back and enjoy the bluster on the other side of the Manche.

  8. Andy 73

    Let's not question the EU

    As ever with El Reg, it seems that questioning the EU is not on the agenda.

    Here's what the Hungarian Foreign Minister has to say on Galileo:

    > Q: Would you like to see the UK staying in the Galileo programme?

    > Yes, of course. We understand the UK covers 12 per cent of the costs of the budget of the Galileo programme and I really do think that the security risks that are ahead of the European Union demand a very strong cooperation between the UK and the European Union. I think that giving up the cooperation with the UK on the field of intelligence or any other security aspects would be very irresponsible on the part of the European Union.

    The Remain crowd do our whole country a disservice by characterising Brexit as 'pulling up the drawbridge' on international co-operation. For sure, it changes the relationship, but that's not the same as ending it. It seems that some Remainers actually want that to happen, which is a ridiculous act of self-harm. (Pauses to wait for the inevitable comments) At this stage, it's up to all parties to make the best of the situation - regardless of our individual positions on Brexit, we can't afford to make things worse for the sake of "I told you so".

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Let's not question the EU

      At this stage, it's up to all parties to make the best of the situation - regardless of our individual positions on Brexit, we can't afford to make things worse for the sake of "I told you so".

      be careful with sensible comments like that. The re-moaners are in force on El Reg and you will get slapped down with a torrent of down votes for sensible comments.

      but have an upvote on me !!

    2. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: Let's not question the EU

      "The Remain crowd do our whole country a disservice by characterising Brexit as 'pulling up the drawbridge' on international co-operation."

      But then again they could be right:

      The UK space agency, on behalf of the business minister Greg Clark, wrote to British companies asking them to consult the government before agreeing any new contracts to work on the project, in a move aimed at stopping the transfer of technology to EU companies.

    3. CliveS
      FAIL

      Re: Let's not question the EU

      ''At this stage, it's up to all parties to make the best of the situation - regardless of our individual positions on Brexit, we can't afford to make things worse for the sake of "I told you so".''

      Well at the time I thought Brexit was a bad idea, was going to prove to be expensive and challenging and couldn't see any way of making it work well. As a slim majority of those who voted chose to leave then fine, so be it. I'm currently making the best of the situation - for myself. Don't bother asking me for any bright ideas on making a success of the whole flawed exercise though; I couldn't see any way then and I still can't now. So if you don't mind, I'm going to carry on trying to construct some sort of fabric money container out of this piece of porcine auditory appendage for the benefit of those who matter to me. Those who wanted Brexit can blooming well tackle the Gordian Knot themselves as I presume they had some great ideas about how things will pan out. Not going to gloat over the discovery by the Leave groupings that things aren't as simple as they thought, but only because I have higher priorities. "I told you so is a luxury only those who stand to profit either way can afford.

      PS. Can we please drop all the "Brexidiot" and "Remoaner" bollocks while we're at it.

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Let's not question the EU

        PS. Can we please drop all the "Brexidiot" and "Remoaner" bollocks while we're at it.

        Yes, this please. This is the juvenile level of the debate that is prevalent in the UK and is a marker for some of the reasons for the problems. That people do this primary school name-calling is an embarrassment to the country and not unnoticed outside these shores. It's like after these words have been used on web comments for the 10 billionth time these people somehow think they are being clever.

        On one side of the problem, it has always seemed to me that the institution is set up to mostly benefit certain nations closer to the geographic centre, on the other hand the continuity of the EU leadership means that we get consistent application of long term projects. Our own contentious government system doesn't do long term very well because the opposition... well they oppose.

        But on the other hand it seems that just leaving hard brexit is not the smart solution, because it is going to be economically very damaging and make it harder to make a living - which will hot the already less well off the hardest. It's also going to hurt some long and painfully achieved peace. No amount of fingers-in-the-ears lalalaing is going to make that go away.

        Sitting round a poker table with the other EU nations each playing a hand. The UK hand is 2,4,5,8,9 mixed suits. The other nations are comparing hands so they know what the UK has. The UK is in a very very weak position.

        I'm OK, I have 2 passports and have been preparing financially since the vote.

    4. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Let's not question the EU

      I really do think that the security risks that are ahead of the European Union demand a very strong cooperation between the UK and the European Union

      Indeed so, and Barnier's comment that "third countries (which is what the UK will be following withdrawal) cannot participate in the development of security-sensitive projects" is just plain silly. Even outside the EU there's no reason that the UK wouldn't still be a secure ally for the other members, that is in everyone's interests. It will still be in NATO, for example. Arguably it would be safer for the EU to trust the UK as an ally than to trust some of the ex-eastern block member countries that are less stable, and more at risk of attack/infiltration.

      It's just gesture politics, the EU has to punish the UK for leaving its club.

    5. TVU Silver badge

      Re: Let's not question the EU

      "The Remain crowd do our whole country a disservice by characterising Brexit as 'pulling up the drawbridge' on international co-operation"

      ^ But that is exactly what you and others voted for despite the warnings.

      You are now finding out that crude, xenophobic and nationalistic isolation comes with a high price tag. That was your vote, you created this problem so now accept and own the direct consequences of your actions.

      1. Andy 73

        Re: Let's not question the EU

        Sorry to burst your bubble, but I didn't vote for Brexit. I was (and still am) quite ambivalent towards both of the extremes of the Referendum.

        This is exactly the issue I have with some unrelenting Remainers though, that allow the referendum to define at least half of the country as 'thick, xenophobic sociopaths'. It does a huge disservice to the people who didn't vote your way, and going forward will do more damage by allowing the EU to justify some quite questionable negotiating. This form of self-flagellation does not undo the Referendum, nor does it build bridges going forward.

        It also lets the current government off the hook by laying the blame at 'the wrong choice' rather than an utterly disastrous implementation.

        1. John Robson Silver badge

          Re: Let's not question the EU

          Not half the country. About 1/6th if it.

          Because that’s how many people voted for this idiocy.

          It’s a non reversible transaction - so we should be a hell of a lot more than 1/6th behind it...

          1. Dodgy Geezer Silver badge

            Re: Let's not question the EU

            Yawn.....

            35% of the electorate voted to stay

            37% of the electorate voted to leave

            28% of the electorate expressed no preference

            If you express no preference, you are deemed to be happy with whatever is decided. So the total percentage happy to leave the EU is 63%, and those who do not want to, 35%.

            Of course, minds change. Polls indicate that more people would now vote to leave, having seen how the EU treat the leaving negotiations, and the dissenting countries like Italy, Greece, Hungary and Poland who are still in the EU....

            1. werdsmith Silver badge

              Re: Let's not question the EU

              Of course, minds change. Polls indicate that more people would now vote to leave,

              Other polls indicate that the elderly (the ones who mostly voted leave but are not going to have to live with the consequences) are slowly dying off and the younger voters (who more voted to stay and are the people who are actually going to have to live with the consequences for decades) are increasing in proportion.

              Brexit was just a sort of nebulous idea when the vote happened. The negotiations are making things clearer and hardening the idea into a reality. This means a second referendum would be an actual informed vote. This does not mean "keep having referendums until you get the answer you want" it means have a vote based on the actual reality of a brexit deal.

              Leavers are very much against a second properly informed referendum, because they fear the outcome. That could hardly be less democratic.

              1. Andy 73

                Re: Let's not question the EU

                > Other polls indicate that the elderly (the ones who mostly voted leave but are not going to have to live with the consequences) are slowly dying off and the younger voters (who more voted to stay and are the people who are actually going to have to live with the consequences for decades) are increasing in proportion.

                Ah, the Jeremy Corbyn 'youthquake' delusion. It's pretty widely acknowledged that the young idealists that vote with their hearts grow old, bitter and cynical and vote from life experience. Hang on to your hat, because this might blow your mind - the elderly are an endlessly replenished resource. :)

                As for consequences, the consequence of the Referendum is that we are going to have to change our relationship with the EU. After all the legal challenges, the general election and attempts at forming 'pro-EU' parties, it's vanishingly unlikely we're going to 'un-Leave'. So, to avoid far more damaging consequences of a bungled negotiation leaving us with neither independence nor influence, we have to step up to the mark and assert our value. However 'nebulous' you might think the idea of ending membership of the EU is, we've got to make it work. Some of that will involve actually acting like grown ups and fighting for continued joint projects with other nations.

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: Let's not question the EU

                  >Ah, the Jeremy Corbyn 'youthquake' delusion. It's pretty widely acknowledged that the young idealists that vote with their hearts grow old, bitter and cynical and vote from life experience. Hang on to your hat, because this might blow your mind - the elderly are an endlessly replenished resource. :)

                  Actually, that is a bit of a fallacy. Lesser educated people tend to become more right-wing as they age. More educated people are less likely to. *If* the educational standards in the UK increased over the last 50 years, then the proportion of right-wing voters should decrease - and trends in Tory party membership seem to follow that (most members are over 50 and membership is decreasing countrywide).

              2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

                Re: Let's not question the EU

                Leavers are very much against a second properly informed referendum, because they fear the outcome.

                No, we're very much against a second referendum because we believe that if it returns what the EU insists is the "correct" answer (i.e. "stay") we'll be forced to accept that withoiut further discussion, but if it also returns "leave" there will be demands for yet another vote, and so on. Best of 3? Best of 5?

                You can't keep holding votes until you get the result you like, and then stop. You either vote at regular intervals, such as in an election, or you make a decision and stick to it for long enoiugh to see it through, which would be roughly a generation for an issue like this.

                1. Steve Gill

                  Re: Let's not question the EU

                  Did you kneejerk respond without reading the whole post?

                  "Brexit was just a sort of nebulous idea when the vote happened. The negotiations are making things clearer and hardening the idea into a reality. This means a second referendum would be an actual informed vote. This does not mean "keep having referendums until you get the answer you want" it means have a vote based on the actual reality of a brexit deal."

                  1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

                    Re: Let's not question the EU

                    This means a second referendum would be an actual informed vote.

                    So you want a referendum on whether the Government & EU should seriously negotiate leaving, which I doubt very much the EU would have agreed to (they would have said "trigger article 50 if you're serious, and then we'll talk) and then after years of pain you want another vote on whether they did a good job?

                    We pretty much had that. Lot's of non-binding opinion polls (and rising UKIP votes) which clearly sent the message that the goverment needed to do something. They did, and Cameron came back like Chamberlain, brandishing his "look at the the changes I negotiated!" letter. He then called a vote on whether the changes were acceptable, and the people said No.

                    If we don't like the result of the negotiations, we do of course have the option of throwing out the government at the next election and electing a pro-EU party to undo it. The lack of massive increase in support for the LibDems in the last election (after the referendum) doesn't make that seem likely, though.

            2. John Robson Silver badge

              Re: Let's not question the EU

              "If you express no preference, you are deemed to be happy with whatever is decided. So the total percentage happy to leave the EU is 63%, and those who do not want to, 35%."

              a) Your maths leaves a little to be desired.

              b) You could equally read that those happy to stay number 63%

              The margin of victory was such that it is a realistic negotiating tool. Farage's desire for a second referendum if the result was 'close' was soon forgotten.

              The non binding nature of such referendums was soon forgotten.

              The one way nature of the operation is just ignored.

              We could easily have said.

              Referendum shows deep discontent, we need to make some changes - we'll see what changes we can make over the next 5-10 years and then come back and ask again. Because the option to leave would always have been open.

              If we go through with this, then we can never reverse the decision - the best we could do would be to apply to join as a non founder full union member...

              1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

                Re: Let's not question the EU

                a) Your maths leaves a little to be desired.

                It's far more correct than yours.

                b) You could equally read that those happy to stay number 63%

                No, you could not. People who don't vote are implicitly declarding "I don't care, somebody else can choose" which means they agree to go with the majority decision, which was to leave.

                The non binding nature of such referendums was soon forgotten.

                That's sophistry. There is no point in asking for a formal vote and then ignoring it because it was supposedly "non-binding". If that's all you want, just use an opinion poll.

                Referendum shows deep discontent, we need to make some changes - we'll see what changes we can make over the next 5-10 years and then come back and ask again.

                That's exactly what happened. Cameron said that there was deep discontent, so he would work to negotiate changes and put them to a vote. He negotiated bugger all except window dressing, which was completely unsurprising since the EU was never going to accept anything else. He then lost the vote.

                If we go through with this, then we can never reverse the decision - the best we could do would be to apply to join as a non founder full union member..

                And? We never were a founder member. The common market was founded in 1957, De Gaulle didn't want us to join and we didn't until 1973. By the time the EU was created out of it we were just sucked in with all the other members, few of whom even had a chance to vote on the issue.

                If it all goes wrong, and it turns out that the EU is the only future for Europe, we can of course hold another referendum in 20-odd years to ask to rejoin. Personally I'd be surprised if the EU still existed in its current form by then.

                1. John Robson Silver badge

                  Re: Let's not question the EU

                  @Phil O'Sophical

                  a) My memory might be poor, but my maths is correct.

                  b) If it actually means apathy then you can count them for either side, you can't suggest that apathy means they only agree with you.

                  c) The whole point of a referendum like this was that it wasn't binding. It could easily have been written to be binding - but it wasn't. It was a proper scale opinion poll.

                  d) No it's not. Cameron may have claimed discontent, he couldn't point to evidence of it.

                  e) Non founder, but still with significant special exceptions which we will never be able to get again.

            3. Glenn Booth

              Re: Let's not question the EU

              @Dodgy Geezer we must be looking at different polls. From what I've been reading it looks as if remainers are gaining ground... https://whatukthinks.org/eu/questions/if-there-was-a-referendum-on-britains-membership-of-the-eu-how-would-you-vote-2/

          2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: Let's not question the EU

            Not half the country. About 1/6th if it.

            53% of 74% is not 1/6th. If that's an example of remainer maths then it doesn't bodw well for the quality of your other arguments.

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: Let's not question the EU

              >53% of 74% is not 1/6th. If that's an example of remainer maths then it doesn't bodw well for the quality of your other arguments.

              *51.89%* of *72.21%* of those allocated a vote (46.5m out of a 2016 UK population of 65.64m). 17.4m out of 65.64m is 26.5%, or *if* you count those UK citizens living in the EU (~1.5m) that didn't get a vote, roughly 25%.

              If you are going to be critical, at least be correct :)

              1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

                Re: Let's not question the EU

                If you are going to be critical, at least be correct :)

                OK, if you'll be reasonable :)

                Counting the whole population of the UK, including infants, isn't realistic. 46.5m people were eligible to vote, so claiming 65.6, as your baseline is nonsense.

                UK citizens living elsewhere in the EU only lose their vote after 15 years, so you can't include all 1.5m. I'm one of them, and would have voted leave, so you can't even assume they'd all have voted Remain.

                Realistically the only valid interpretation is that 33.55m out of 46.5m actually voted, which is indeed 72.2% (and far more than vote in EU elections, which shows that people took this seriously).

                Of the valid votes 51.85% voted to leave, which is 37.4% of the voters, twice the "1/6th" that was claimed.

                1. John Robson Silver badge

                  Re: Let's not question the EU

                  "Counting the whole population of the UK, including infants, isn't realistic. 46.5m people were eligible to vote, so claiming 65.6, as your baseline is nonsense."

                  Why not. Does the decision only affect those who are registered to vote?

                  I said (wrongly) 1/6th of the country. Not of the registered voters.

                  I should have said <25%, rather than ~1/6th.

                  Farage himself said:

                  (Mirror interview published online 22:00, 16 MAY 2016)

                  "In a 52-48 referendum this would be unfinished business by a long way. If the Remain campaign win two-thirds to one-third that ends it."

                  Interesting that he didn't consider the option of the Leave campaign winning by enough margin to 'end it'

                  1. codejunky Silver badge

                    Re: Let's not question the EU

                    @ John Robson

                    "Farage himself said:

                    (Mirror interview published online 22:00, 16 MAY 2016)

                    "In a 52-48 referendum this would be unfinished business by a long way. If the Remain campaign win two-thirds to one-third that ends it.""

                    So will the remain crowd do that? Be aware that their challenging has been done at the MEP and UK elections, so to do the same the remainers can vote a remain party come the next election. There may not be a remain party as we should have left so it might be a rejoin party but the option is there for you.

                    I would like the remain crowd to act that responsibly/democratic but so far I dont see much evidence. Interestingly the party of remain last election was the lib dems, but they didnt do very well.

                    1. John Robson Silver badge

                      Re: Let's not question the EU

                      "So will the remain crowd do that?"

                      Will the remain crowd do what?

                      If the vote had been 2/3rds in either direction then I don't think there would have been that much more debate afterwards... The point is that it wasn't, there was practically nothing in it.

                      And rejoin != stay.

                      The two are fundamentally different as a result of the various exceptions we already hold (but could not possibly negotiate in any attempt to rejoin).

                      That's why I think leaving at this point is a mistake - it's because the decision is asymmetric.

                      - If we stay now, we can leave in 5-10 years.

                      - If we leave now, we cannot reverse that decision in 5-10 years.

                      General elections with a FPTP local representation and tactical voting doesn't give a particularly accurate view of what the electorate feels about the parties as a whole, let alone what they think about one specific issue.

                      1. codejunky Silver badge

                        Re: Let's not question the EU

                        @ John Robson

                        "Will the remain crowd do what?"

                        Stick with democracy instead of insisting on ditching democracy because it got the 'wrong' answer? Instead of dictatorship they accept the result of the referendum, accept leave and come the next election they will have the opportunity to vote for a remain party. Just as leave voters would have done had we lost.

                        "If the vote had been 2/3rds in either direction then I don't think there would have been that much more debate afterwards... The point is that it wasn't, there was practically nothing in it."

                        Of course this stupidity would continue even if it was 2/3rds. People would just demand a higher threshold, still inist we are too stupid to understand so leave should be ignored and complaints the little children didnt get to vote. Saying there is practically nothing in it is to try and diminish there was something in it and its a democratic vote. If people struggle with that then they should move to a dictatorship somewhere.

                        "And rejoin != stay."

                        I know. I have asked this a few times that if the EU is so wonderful why people supporting it would have a problem joining it proper. To rejoin would likely mean ditching the opt outs and instead joining the EU fully. Why dont you want to join your wonderful political project?

                        "That's why I think leaving at this point is a mistake - it's because the decision is asymmetric."

                        It always will be. If we leave we cannot rejoin on the same opt outs full stop. If we dont leave now we obviously cant because of severe political corruption which will never let us leave. If we cannot leave now we are less likely to leave in 5-10 years because our membership is dictated. Each election since labour has won with the manifesto promise of a choice on our membership. The last election only the Lib Dems offered remain and were pummelled.

                        "General elections with a FPTP local representation and tactical voting doesn't give a particularly accurate view of what the electorate feels about the parties as a whole, let alone what they think about one specific issue."

                        Then you must accept the answer. Not only through FPTP but through a democratic majority wins vote the result has been handed to you with no grey area or ambiguity. Accept it. If you dont then tough, democracy obviously doesnt work for you. But if you can accept it that does not mean the end-

                        You can still believe we would be better off in and so vote a party to rejoin. Or you could side with the leave voters who are outward looking and wanting to trade with the world including the EU. Your hopes dont rest on a desperate attempt to impose an anti-democracy.

                        1. John Robson Silver badge

                          Re: Let's not question the EU

                          "Then you must accept the answer"

                          When the answer is not clear, and the decision is so asymmetric then only a fool would run with it in the way the current leadership is.

                          Which bowl of rice is clearly bigger?

                          "You can still believe we would be better off in and so vote a party to rejoin."

                          Except that's not what I think we should do - and parties have a variety of policies which need balancing when you consider who to vote for.

                          Particularly difficult when you consider that where I live there is virtually no chance of the incumbent MP getting voted out, and even less chance of them getting voted out in favour of a party I'd like to see in power. SO I actually cast my vote for my second choice party, because I'd rather they got an extra MP than the party who hold this seat.

                          It's not nearly as simple as you seem to think... Elections are not a single policy decision, and they're not even a fair representation of people's view.

                          1. codejunky Silver badge

                            Re: Let's not question the EU

                            @ John Robson

                            "When the answer is not clear"

                            My jaw actually dropped for a moment then. Not clear? Which part of voted out and not voting for the only party offering remain is unclear to you? How is this not clear? Do you need a dictionary? A math lesson? I dont know in what way you can not understand, its simple and clear.

                            "and the decision is so asymmetric then only a fool would run with it in the way the current leadership is."

                            Except the current leadership will never be a leadership everyone agrees with and so will always be a poor excuse. Apply the same to remaining in the EU with spineless Blair and Cameron and we have the poor excuse to leave. The good excuse to leave being we voted for it.

                            "Except that's not what I think we should do"

                            And that is the problem. 100% without any doubt the very problem you have. And so what? You are in a democracy and as such your singular vote was added to the others (assuming you voted) and most people want out. It is clear and no single persons view nor the minority view should undo the democratic vote. You are not the dictator of this country.

                            "Particularly difficult when you consider that where I live there is virtually no chance of the incumbent MP getting voted out"

                            Did you have that problem with the EU referendum of 1 vote = 1 vote plain and clear and as simple a system as you can have? So you voted, we voted and the total came out leave. It is not in question

                            "It's not nearly as simple as you seem to think... Elections are not a single policy decision, and they're not even a fair representation of people's view."

                            Which is why the referendum was as simple as can be and so the vote came back, job done, result in, very plain, very clear, we leave! Your personal problem of you personally not agreeing with the result is not worth more than the country.

            2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

              Re: Let's not question the EU

              I do love the way remainers downvote facts they don't like. It's almost Trump-esque.

            3. John Robson Silver badge

              Re: Let's not question the EU

              >> Not half the country. About 1/6th if it.

              > 53% of 74% is not 1/6th. If that's an example of remainer maths then it doesn't bodw well for the quality of your other arguments.

              UK Population: 65million

              Votes to leave: 17million

              Ok, it's much closer to a quarter than I had remembered - that's a memory issue, not a maths one.

              but 51.9% is not 53%, and the actual turnout was 72.2%, not 74%.

              I'll assume your memory isn't perfect either.

    6. Frenchie Lad

      Re: Let's not question the EU

      Your use of the Hungarians is an example of the disunity within the EU. Hungary like many of the newer members have a very different vision of the EU compared to the stalwarts of the West. So yes your statement is correct but not the whole story.

    7. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

      Re: Let's not question the EU

      "Pulling up the drawbridge"

      Nope, the hard-brexit nutters do want to pull up the drawbridge, but want our former partners to keep leaving supplies of food and goods in a basket for us to pull up on a rope, without us contributing anything in return.

      Leave means leave. Mrs May said so.

  9. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge
    Facepalm

    More likely

    is the the mid level diplomats are currently haggling out a solution along the lines of

    "The UK pay X billions to the EU to use all parts of the system while the EU pays the UK X billions to licence the UK's technologies and assets used in the system"

    But then that will not generate the same demeaning and sensational headlines to be used by the media...

    1. Lars Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: More likely

      Something like that*, but it's also more likely that some Brits forget that Galileo has other third party members too, and in a ruled based system that might create very logical conflicts to take into account too.

      * the no money, no honey will apply as before, however, as running the system needs a budget.

      1. Frenchie Lad

        Re: More likely

        Rule based in theory of course but the EU is extremely flexible so in practice these rules are made to be broken (rebates as one example) especially as the bureaucrats are accountable to no one. The EU can afford to throw a few billion around here & there because it has a grandiose socialist agenda and is willing to bribe its way forward (when were the EU's accounts last successfully audited?).

  10. Jeffrey Nonken Silver badge

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DohRa9lsx0Q

  11. mark l 2 Silver badge

    So good to see this was another thing the Brexiters had foreseen and planned for well in advance when they decided to campaign for leaving the EU. Well done chaps.

  12. Rob D.
    Unhappy

    So sad we are leaving

    But that does mean anything which is primarily within the remit of the EU becomes a bargaining chip with the EU having the whip hand.

    The EU negotiating position is simple and entirely valid - we want the best outcome for the EU members; we don't give two hoots about how it affects the UK since the UK will not be an EU member; if there is a deal to make which is better for EU members we'll make it. On Galileo there is some sensible horse-trading to be done, but while it would cost the EU time and money to backfill the loss of the UK, yet again no deal is worse for the UK than for the EU. The UK negotiating leverage is ridiculously limited.

    1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: So sad we are leaving

      The EU negotiating position is simple and entirely valid - we want the best outcome for the EU members; we don't give two hoots about how it affects the UK since the UK will not be an EU member

      Not really, if that were the case they would be negotiating properly. Their actual position, which is entirely logical when looked at from the EU point of view, is that the UK must be made to lose even if the EU loses as well. A successful post-Brexit UK would be highly damaging to the concept of the EU, so the EU is willing to take a hit as long as the UK takes a worse one. "win-win" isn't an acceptable outcome.

      That's not a good situation for fair negotiations, of course, something which seems to have excaped Theresa May's notice.

      1. Malcolm Weir Silver badge

        Re: So sad we are leaving

        Phil, all you really did there was add some definition to "best outcome for the EU members"!

        Fairness has never been an issue in international negotiations, and it is extremely disingenuous for May et al to whine about it. Indeed, during the "Independent Scotland" campaign leading up to that referendum, Westminster made it quite clear that if Scotland left the UK, Scotland would be penalized (like having to apply for EU membership, remarkably....)

        The real failure of May's government with respect to Brexit is that she/they squandered the strongest bargaining card they had, and gained absolutely nothing for it. I refer of course to the invocation of Article 50: Tusk made quite clear immediately after the referendum that he hoped that Britain would move swiftly so they could get it over and done with as soon as possible. How more obvious could he have been?

        *ALL* of the core negotiations with respect to life-after-Brexit should have been completed before Article 50 was invoked, so the 2 years could be used to implement the coming changes. Yes, I know the EU didn't want to do that, but they also didn't want a country with a mandate to leave the bloc hanging around under-foot with all the legal rights of any member but clearly interested in sabotaging the whole idea until they got what they wanted...

        The fact that they didn't do this reflects on them.

        However, there's apparently no reason why they cannot rescind Article 50, loudly announce that it was clear that Barnier had failed to play fairly, and, ummm, start over. [ There seems to be pretty consistent consensus that NOTHING is final after Article 50 until the withdrawal agreement is finalized or two years pass. ]

        1. Frenchie Lad

          Re: So sad we are leaving

          Tusk = Merkel's poodle

        2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

          Re: So sad we are leaving

          Tusk made quite clear immediately after the referendum that he hoped that Britain would move swiftly so they could get it over and done with as soon as possible. How more obvious could he have been?

          True. The government should have invoked article 50 the day after the referendum, but instead they were too busy backstabbing each other over the leadership and we ended up with a useless "safe pair of hands" (joke!) like May.

          *ALL* of the core negotiations with respect to life-after-Brexit should have been completed before Article 50 was invoked, so the 2 years could be used to implement the coming changes. Yes, I know the EU didn't want to do that,

          I can't see the EU taking negotiations at all seriously without Art. 50 being invoked. It's been clear all along that they expect the UK to "see the error of its ways", and drop the whole idea of exit. It's part of the arrogance of the EU that the cannot conceive that anyone who disagrees with them could be right, they simply assume that their view will prevail as the only valid one.

          Only when Art.50 was invoked did they start serious negotiations, and even today they waffle and stall. The rare occasions when they realy get upset and drop the patronizing waffle is when they seem to be losing, like when the UK brought up the facts of the Galileo contracts. That seems to have woken Barnier up a bit. We need more moments like that, hard facts and a convincing display of willingness to just walk out, hard Brexit included. For as long as May plays the conciliatory doormat, and keeps her cabinet divided, the EU will retain the upper hand.

    2. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: So sad we are leaving

      Although in this particular case the sensible position is to walk away from Galileo with a sigh of relief.

      The use case is to retain access to the encrypted military channel in the circumstance in which the USA blocked access to GPS for it's UK NATO ally for the entire theatre of war (remember no selective availability - it's GPS or nothing) and yet the 27 Eu members would all have approved the UK's actions.

      Bearing in mind that the USA has a kill switch for Galileo if it ever needed to block GPS from an area

    3. Frenchie Lad

      Re: So sad we are leaving

      Disagree.

      The EU does not work in the interests of its members. As Orwell explained all animals are equal but some (the Germans in case you hadn't noticed) are more equal than others. Even Macron can't get Merkel to finance France's excesses. The Greek crisis (some 2% of of the EU), was only salvaged to save French & German banks from disaster.

      The UK negotiators should sit back and let Italy make a few headlines. Now there's a real gigantic iceberg for the EU Titanic.

      1. caffeine addict Silver badge

        Re: So sad we are leaving

        Lets not forget that Die Welt claimed German banks made more than $1bn profit from the Greek financial crisis.

        That was one of the reasons I voted to leave - the EU pulls countries in, demands they join the Euro when they're financially shot, lets the Euro and French/German banks screw them over, then lets those same banks make a massive profit from the misery they caused. I don't see how that's can be considered an ethical organisation.

        1. caffeine addict Silver badge

          Re: So sad we are leaving

          I'd love to know why people downvoted my last comment. The German bank profit is a matter of fact.

          Was it purely because I expressed a non-xenophobic, non-Daily Mail reason that I voted out? Or just because I voted out at all?

      2. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: So sad we are leaving

        @ Frenchie Lad

        "Even Macron can't get Merkel to finance France's excesses. The Greek crisis (some 2% of of the EU), was only salvaged to save French & German banks from disaster."

        Something you may be genuinely interested in is how Italy is planning on getting around those rules. It would appear that while they cannot create Euro nor bring back the Lira they can issue a new IOU currency which should have a similar effect as cash! This causes fears in the financial market as governments being free to print as much as they like tend to keep printing, but also scares the federalists as it breaks their control over Italy.

        No idea how this is going to work out but it could be interesting.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Staying in the current Galileo project would obviously be the preferred option if possible but if the EU are going to make that difficult then from what I've seen the main argument against going down the route of a new unilateral global positioning project is the estimated £5bil cost. Why not get together with a few other trusted, long-standing non-EU allies like Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada and spread that cost and expertise? Australia has already recently been investing hundreds of millions of dollars in systems to augment GPS so I imagine they would be quite interested in getting more closely involved in an independent system (politics willing).

    1. Wellyboot Silver badge

      @ anon - Commonwealth GPS

      Makes for very easy ground station placement.

    2. Alfie Noakes

      ...and that would also provide a very nice world-wide set of "base-stations" that would be in control of the participants!

      1. Alfie Noakes

        Wellyboot beat me to it ;)

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Ah yes; the white commonwealth will save us dream!

      Might as well go with America and use their GPS. They supply our nukes and fighter jets so we might as well make becoming the 51st state part of the deal with Trump.

      1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

        Ah yes; the white commonwealth will save us dream!

        Have you looked at the colour of most Commonwealth peoples?

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Australia far more likely to stick with US in military terms (to misquote Python: "GPS, GPS, egg, GPS and chips"). Furthermore, despite all the warm and happy noises from our PM and Dept of Foreign Affairs and Trade at the start of the year, Australia is certainly far more concerned with getting an FTA and associated STEM agreements with the EU (negotiations already underway) than the UK. In any event, don't expect favours in any future discussions or negotiations over anything: possible economic benefits notwithstanding, the politics are that many people in Australia and NZ still remember the 'Great Betrayal' of the early 1970s (a point forgotten by BoJo, Fox et al. in their misty-eyed quest to renew auld acquaintance).

    5. hammarbtyp Silver badge

      Staying in the current Galileo project would obviously be the preferred option if possible but if the EU are going to make that difficult then from what I've seen the main argument against going down the route of a new unilateral global positioning project is the estimated £5bil cost. Why not get together with a few other trusted, long-standing non-EU allies like Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Canada and spread that cost and expertise? Australia has already recently been investing hundreds of millions of dollars in systems to augment GPS so I imagine they would be quite interested in getting more closely involved in an independent system (politics willing).

      Good plan...Except

      Despite GPS being global, they are designed to provide maximum coverage is certain geographic areas. The original GPS was designed to cover the northern latitudes for missile launches, Glosnas, the Russian subcontinent, Galileo Europe.

      Now I know geography is not a big thing with Brexiters, some who think that Australia is just off the Irish coast, but providing a system for such widely separate countries would cost far more in terms of Satellite coverage than the Europe one and likely provide poorer coverage.

      2nd point, while Brexiters like to promote the commonwealth as some sort of old boys club(well the white bits anyway), The reality is that these areas are far more closely aligned with the economic areas where they they find themselves. Canada is closely aligned with the US, Australia and New Zealand increasingly look at pacific co-operation. I very much doubt they will be interesting in funding a boondongle just to get the UK out of its Brexit hole

      1. Wandering Reader

        Despite GPS being global, they are designed to provide maximum coverage is certain geographic areas. The original GPS was designed to cover the northern latitudes for missile launches, Glosnas, the Russian subcontinent, Galileo Europe.<br>

        Well, orbital mechanics will tell you that non geosynchronous orbits may give slightly better coverage over a particular range of latitudes, but will certainly not give better coverage over specific longitudes (e.g. time zones). And the Northern hemisphere coverage will be just as good as the southern hemisphere coverage for the corresponding latitudes.

        So that's the satellites. Are you talking about the ground stations? Easy to sort out.

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          One of the selling points of Galileo was to have better coverage in northern latitudes than GPS. In practice this means some ground based augmentation stations in Norway (another non-Eu member) which could equally well augment GPS.

        2. Malcolm Weir Silver badge

          Right point, but in practice the actual GPS constellation doesn't care about latitudes, either.

          There are 6 orbits used by GPS, each one inclined at 60 degrees to its neighbors. Each orbit is subsynchronous, with a period of 12 hours, so a given satellite orbits twice a day. Each orbit has four satellites active, for a total of 24 as the core constellation.

          Now, as it happens, there are more than 24 satellites in orbit, so the USAF has positioned three of the extra birds so that certain locations on the planet are more likely to "see" a satellite at a greater azimuth above the horizon more of the time. This is the origin of the "works better in northern climes" thing, but it's not a function of orbital mechanics. For example, the USAF could decide to run a 30 satellite constellation, putting 5 birds in all six orbits, which would provide the same benefit to every spot.

          The fact that there are actually 31 viable satellites in orbit should tell you that the benefit of a 30-bird constellation is not perceived as very high...

  14. Will Godfrey Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Missed opportunity

    About 30 years ago I was given an offer that would have involved moving to Germany.

    Why, oh why, did I turn it down?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Missed opportunity

      Why, oh why, did I turn it down?

      The beer?

      1. Will Godfrey Silver badge
        Thumb Up

        Re: Missed opportunity

        Good point!

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Given the poor state of the clocks being used in the Galileo, the EU might come to the UK begging for access to the UK system...

    Of all the things to get hung up on, Galileo is a stupid project to choose to use as means to bash the UK. The thing is worth only a few billion. That is, comparatively speaking, nothing compared to the amount of trade between the UK and the EU that might stop happening because of this row. Especially as:

    1) Galileo as it's currently planned depends on the continued good will of the UK,

    2) The UK controls access to some of the critical tech and geography

    3) the UK can get its money back by withholding some of its remaining EU payments,

    4) Italy, one of the countries in the EU that also has quite an active space sector, has just gone off the rails and might be exiting the Euro within the year and the EU shortly thereafter, and

    5) The European Commission has just demanded that the remaining member nations boost the EU budget by some stonkingly large amount (€300billion?), and to make up the gap left by the UK withdrawal, demands that apparently (and unsurprisingly) have been met with incredulous derision by the likes of Germany, Netherlands, etc, some of whom might now be beginning to see the UK's point.

    The other crazy thing is that the EU seems to be basing its justification on security grounds. An encrypted GNSS system need be secure only if one is going to go off one some adventurous, foreign military campaign. It's the kind of thing you use to drop precision bombs on someone, or ICBM warheads. And I just can't see any member nation of the EU, or the EU itself, going off and doing that. What are they planning on doing? Invading Andorra? Germany has got 4 working fighter jets at the moment, and can't send its troops any further than the range of VW Golf with a full tank of diesel. You certainly don't need a secure, encrypted GNSS system for counting sheep in the Tuscan hills or for navigating from Berlin to Warsaw.

    I actually voted Remain, but seeing how disconnected from reality the EU commission seems to be I do wonder if I voted the right way. I fear that we (i.e. all European countries) have completely fucked up making a sensible European coordinating body, doing so for fear of being embarrassed to spoil the party. Have we all been massively conned by the European technocrats who have exploited this "don't upset the apple cart" mentality to further their own roles and line their own nests? After all it's not like we can inspect their spending accounts...

    1. TVU Silver badge

      "Given the poor state of the clocks being used in the Galileo, the EU might come to the UK begging for access to the UK system..."

      ^ That is Brexit fantasy territory (again). You should know that France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Netherlands and Belgium all have well developed aerospace sectors and they can manage quite well without the UK.

      Furthermore, just how is the UK going to pay for this shiny new me too GPS satellite constellation? With yet more of those magic Brexit unicorn currency units?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Euro space agency's Galileo satellites stricken by mystery clock failures. Suggests they have a bit of a problem. If it turns out to be not very durable then Galileo would be a big flop.

        Besides, a GNSS ain't that expensive compared to, say, 10, 20 years ago.

        1. werdsmith Silver badge

          Euro space agency's Galileo satellites stricken by mystery clock failures. Suggests they have a bit of a problem. If it turns out to be not very durable then Galileo would be a big flop.

          Yes, they seem to be having a problem with these clocks in their installation in the Giove test birds that were built in Guildford. May well turn out to be a British problem.

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Brit-bashing

            Yes, they seem to be having a problem with these clocks in their installation in the Giove test birds that were built in Guildford. May well turn out to be a British problem.

            If you read the official EAS report into the failures you will see that one of the problems has been traced to a component in the RAFS master clock, designed and built in Switzerland, and another is in the PHM clocks built by Selex-ES, an Italian company. It goes on to say that "No RAFS clock failures have occurred aboard the four Galileo In Orbit Validation (IOV) satellites, the original Galileo model." which are the GIOVE ones you're referring to.

            So, sorry to disappoint you, but it's not a Brtitish problem.

    2. Malcolm Weir Silver badge

      You don't use a GNSS for nukes or ICBMs, because you assume in the former case that you are operating in a "RF contested environment" (i.e. a honking great EMP burst has hosed your radios) and in the latter case because most of the key exo-atmospheric maneuvering happens in an environment where line-of-site of stars is guaranteed (i.e. space).

      But your point is valid: the reasons to limit access for security reasons are gibberish, because while not all EU nations are NATO members, a whole lot of them are. Gallileo will make the EU less vulnerable to peculiar US interference, so an argument that the UK shouldn't be able to CONTROL the constellation is sound, but the argument that they shouldn't be able to use it is not.

      1. rg287 Bronze badge

        But your point is valid: the reasons to limit access for security reasons are gibberish, because while not all EU nations are NATO members, a whole lot of them are. Gallileo will make the EU less vulnerable to peculiar US interference, so an argument that the UK shouldn't be able to CONTROL the constellation is sound, but the argument that they shouldn't be able to use it is not.

        Absolutely this. Whilst the Russian Baltic Fleet provides ample access to Northern European Coastline, the strategically important GIUK and NUK Gaps that the Northern or Chinese Fleets would have to come through (unless they went the long way round) are controlled by Norway, the UK and Iceland. The idea that as NATO allies we can't be trusted with Galileo (explicitly designed to provide better accuracy at higher latitudes... like the Arctic...) because we're outside the EU is utterly nonsensical.

        Gyms don't tell their security agency that they're not allowed to look at the CCTV feeds because they're not members of the gym. They can't use the gym equipment, but you let them use the CCTV and site radio because anything else would be moronic...

  16. James O'Shea Silver badge

    Seems to me

    That if the UK:

    1 has already paid a substantial portion of the overall total costs of the project

    2 owns territory (Las Malvinas, etc.) vital to the project

    Then either the UK stays in the project _as a full member_ or the others in the project can hand back the cash and find somewhere else to plant their ground stations or whatever.

    Further, I don’t see the problem with going to the Commonwealth to set up a rival system; between them, India, Australia, Canada, and South Africa could provide lots of ground support, and India in particular could do a lot of the space-based support. If Mayhem gets out the begging bowl India might even pay for some of it. I’m sure that they’d just love to have the Raj owe them one, and _they_ need a military-grade GPS of their own. I’d also have a chat with Japan, they can help with the space-based end and the financing, though why they’d help gaijins is another question.

    In any case, got my bowl of popcorn and sitting back to watch the fun.

    1. Raphael

      Re: Seems to me

      New Zealand also now has a fledgling space program.

    2. TonyJ Silver badge

      Re: Seems to me

      2 owns territory (Las Malvinas The Falkand Islands, etc.) vital to the project

    3. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

      Re: Seems to me

      India already has it's own system and not having any obvious plans for an empire it doesn't need to be global. Since India is near the equator it's easy to cover the whole sub-continent and any surrounding oceans with just a few geostationary satelites

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Seems to me

        Falklands and South Georgia are not vital. There are other rocks sticking out of the sea within the area that would be required.

        1. rg287 Bronze badge

          Re: Seems to me

          Falklands and South Georgia are not vital. There are other rocks sticking out of the sea within the area that would be required.

          Rocks with extant power, security? If you're building a secure GNSS system, sticking your base stations in an existing military base is the cheapest and most secure way forward.

          There are other rocks that could serve. But they're all owned by the UK, Brazil or Argentina. None of them have quite the handy European military presence of the Falklands or Ascension - you'd have to cut a deal to site a ground station on a Brazilian military base, which is into the realms of the absurd.

        2. James O'Shea Silver badge

          Re: Seems to me

          Which other rocks, belonging to an EU nation, would those be? The nearest French rocks would be Guadeloupe and Martinique, the nearest Dutch would be Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao. There’re all _north_ of the equator. No German, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, etc rocks anywhere nearby.

      2. James O'Shea Silver badge

        Re: Seems to me

        India has an on-going argument with China, and needs a military-grade GPS with a reach beyond South Asia. They also have relatives in the Caribbean and Africa, thanks to the Raj trying and failing to import strike-breakers (there’s a _reason_ why there are so many Indians in Guyana, Trinidad, Jamaica...) and have commercial ties. They’d need civil-grade GPS, world-wide, for that. Geosynchronous is harder to do than LEO.

    4. rg287 Bronze badge

      Re: Seems to me

      Further, I don’t see the problem with going to the Commonwealth to set up a rival system; between them, India, Australia, Canada, and South Africa could provide lots of ground support, and India in particular could do a lot of the space-based support.

      Why be restrictive? The EU are dragging their heels on any non-EU state getting PRS access, including Norway and Iceland, despite both being strategically important to European (and by extension EU) Defence.

      Obviously however, India have a regional system already in service. That's a good base of expertise to build a global network from, and then the sun never sets on our potential range of ground stations.

  17. Mr Dogshit

    I voted Leave

    But only because I thought it meant "leave things the way they are"

  18. YARR
    Meh

    If the EU claims to own Galileo (rather than each ESA nation according to contribution) what happens if more countries leave the EU? Does the last member of the EU get to inherit all the assets?

    The public Galileo system provides accuracy of 1 metre. Why do we need more accuracy than this?

    If the military applications are classified, why would the EU deny us access when they are more dependent on us for defence? We are one of the few nations in Europe to meet our 2% NATO budget commitment despite being in the safest position (having a sea border + the rest of Europe to buffer us from hostile regions). Maybe we should take it easy, cut our defence budget and let the EU take up the slack?

    In summary, getting back control of our borders is far more important.

    1. Malcolm Weir Silver badge

      The "safest" assertion overlooks the fact that, for historical reasons, we're also higher up the "preferred target" list than pretty much anywhere else in Europe.

      Also, the "getting back control of the borders" line is a pile of putrid slimy drivel. From a security standpoint, having an EU passport was (and is) not any guarantee of entry: the UK has always operated its own borders ('cos it's not in the Schengen area) and, like every other EU country, it can refuse admission based on security, public policy or health reasons.

      And indeed in 2015 it apparently did for over 2,100 EU citizens.

      The "control of our borders" line is, and always been, referring to economic "protection", such as e.g. blocking Polish plumbers and similar xenophobic nationalism. Security has never entered into it.

      1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

        Also, the "getting back control of the borders" line is a pile of putrid slimy drivel.

        Not entirely, there's a lot of resentment in all EU countries about the centrally-imposed migrant quotas, and some (like Hungary) are on a collision course with the EU over this.

        Of course, the UK is actually the second-most welcoming EU country for migrants (after Germany) so these quotas have no practical effect, but the basic idea that a centralized authority that we don't trust can overrule our decisions on immigration rubs a lot of people up the wrong way. The same is true for the ECJ's ability to prevent the UK from deporting people that its courts have deemed undesirable.

    2. rg287 Bronze badge

      The public Galileo system provides accuracy of 1 metre. Why do we need more accuracy than this?

      Because in a time of crisis, the public signal might be disabled or degraded.

      PRS won't be.

      If the military applications are classified, why would the EU deny us access when they are more dependent on us for defence?

      Why indeed? The same is true of Norway - they have applied for third-state PRS access but the EU are dragging their heels. Considering the UK and Norway control northern access to the North Sea, they're not doing a very good risk assessment on "EU Defence" vs. "European Defence" or realising that harming the latter, harms the former.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    EC creating problems for Galileo

    The EC started the problems with Galileo by introducing "Brexit clauses" to Galileo ITTs, just after the Brexit vote and long before Article 50 was invoked. This alone should have told the UK government that the EC had no intention of letting Britain participate after Brexit.

    For at least six months, those running Galileo development were uncertain as to what the EC really wanted in relation to procurements and the UK. Since this issue was clarified earlier this year, they have been worried that for some aspects, they really have no alternatives to the British incumbent suppliers. The idea that they could lose the sites in the Falklands, Ascension and Diego Garcia makes matters even worse.

    Now they have been moving British people off of PRS work for a month or so - at a time when their security arangements are already in chaos.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Brexit means Brexit. What part of being a "Third Country" after Brexit doesn't the UK Brexit negotiation team understand?!

    Taking Back Control™®

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      What part of being a "Third Country" after Brexit

      The part that covers the other non-EU Galileo members like Norway and Switzerland?

  21. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

    Back to discussing Galileo...

    Hammond: "“If that proves impossible then Britain will have to go it alone, possibly with other partners outside Europe and the US, to build a third competing system. But for national security strategic reasons we need access to a system and will ensure that we get it.”"

    I may be confused, but aren't there already three competing systems? the US GPS, Glonast and Galileo.

    So we have a chancellor who counts "one, two, many" - no wonder the UK budget is stuffed!

    It's nice that we can afford $10 billion to build our own system (or $30 billion allowing for UK government project efficiency) - now we have a magic money forest!

    1. Wandering Reader

      Re: Back to discussing Galileo...

      "I may be confused, but aren't there already three competing systems? the US GPS, Glonast and Galileo."<br>

      No, only GPS and Glonass. Just to be sure, I went on to Amazon to look for receivers - no Galileo - only GPS and Glonass. Or do you mean BEIDOU?<br>

      So we have a chancellor who counts "one, two, many" - no wonder the UK budget is stuffed!<br>

      It's important to only count what is there.

  22. Tombola

    We've shot our own feet

    I would guess that the contracts & agreements that bind the Galileo project were set up with the European Court of Justice as the final arbiter in case of dispute.

    Since cutting the UK's ties with the ECJ & rejecting its rulings was/is fundamental to the Brexit process, it is difficult to see how the UK can stay in the consortium. Any request by UK to stay implies a ridiculous contradiction, "We want to stay in your Club but reject its rules!"

    It isn't that the EU is being difficult - we've done this to ourselves,

  23. David Roberts Silver badge
    Unhappy

    Brexit <-> Remain ping pong and negotiation

    Watching the usual mud slinging, one option seems to have been ignored; that the UK government is working very hard to make the negotiations fail. Stream of dodgy logic to follow:

    (1) The whole referendum thing was a desperate attempt to stop the right wing of the Tory party decamping en masse to joing UKIP thus destroying the Tory party as a force in government.

    (2) The cabinet positions are a transparent move by TM to get all the unscrupulous lying shits who promoted Brexit from within the Tory party to carry the can for the negotiations and the eventual result. (Othet unscrupulous lying shits are also available).

    (3) The long term aim of the central Tory party is to make the right wing so politically toxic that they will be unable to muster a credible influence for at least a generation.

    .

    .

    If this is anywhere near reality then the tactical/strategic move is to have Brexit turn out to be the biggest pile of steaming toxic shit possible and responsibilty to sit clearly and unequivocally with those seen anywhere near that red Battle Bus.

    It may even be strategic to let Labour win the next election with a note saying "You sat on your hands throughout the negotiations, so let's see how you sort out this mess!".

    None of this is for the good of the country, but it is a long time since anything idealistic has played any part in the plans of professional politicians.

  24. codejunky Silver badge

    Hmm

    "which is best read out loud in a high-pitched warbly voice"

    Why is this never said for the EU demanding something while having no negotiating position to get it? When they make some half baked attack on the UK to then realise they need us for our assets, money, competence? I am quite happy for disbelief that the UK would want to make its own system instead of just using the existing US one especially since the EU want one for the prestige of having one, not for any actual importance.

    "the uncharacteristic bluntness of the language leaves little doubt as to what is at stake."

    The UK probably needs to be more blunt with the EU. They are entitled to nothing, zip, nada, bupkis. With that in mind we seem willing to negotiate, so its up to them if they want to. They are free not to want to, but they cant then cry about it.

  25. chivo243 Silver badge
    Happy

    Love the Stealers Wheel Homage

    See title...

  26. Grisefox

    Given that one consequence of remaining in the Galileo programme will be that the Government can use satellite technology in conjunction with onboard car technology to impose road charging (the Statutory Instrument enabling this was voted through in Parliament in 2007), this explains both why the Government wants to retain access and also why I, for one, will breathe a sigh of relief if our membership of it doesn't continue.

  27. Dave Fox

    Switzerland?

    Seems to me that Switzerland managed to negotiate access to Galileo and PRS in particular.

    https://eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/EN/ALL/?uri=CELEX:22014A0120(01)

    *If* it wanted to, the EU could confer on the UK a particular status, e.g. Trusted Ally, which would allow it to fully participate in Galileo and other sensitive EU projects.

    I suspect that something like this will probably happen once the sabre rattling has ceased.

  28. Reality_Ccheque

    No EU sat-nav? No worries

    One of the primary motivations in having a super-accurate sat-nav system under our control is road pricing. If you don't want to be spied on every time you get in your car - well, any more than you are already - then the loss of the Galileo program is to be celebrated,

  29. Welsh Skeptic

    Galileo

    As with so many things on the news, one needs to know more of the background.

    I was under the impression that this project was funded by the EU and possibly under whatever contract was drawn up, all accruing intellectual property rights would be owned by the EU.

    On this issue, I am totally biased as a remainer and am just waiting the day that all this folly is over and we vote to rejoin the EU.

    As for this country, going it alone is absurd because we cannot afford it and also how many more satellites can be pushed into space before they all collide?

    We might feel that it is absolutely necessary to have access to the military channel but in the event of hostilities, all these navigation satellites will be taken out and it will be back to paper clocks and sextants. I wonder how many people in the armed forces can use a sextant?

    So the real question, is the Galileo contract in the public domain including any sub protocols?

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