back to article UK.gov isn't ready for no-deal Brexit – and 'secrecy' means businesses won't be either

The UK government has left its preparation for a no-deal Brexit too late, while secrecy around negotiations has left businesses unable to prepare, a report has said. The latest missive to slam the government’s preparedness for the UK’s departure from the European Union comes from the Institute for Government think tank. …

  1. WibbleMe

    For us that means paychecks!

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge
      Facepalm

      Or a reason to jump to another country..

    2. fidodogbreath Silver badge

      For us that means paychecks!

      Assuming, of course, that there's a functioning financial system.

    3. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      "For us that means paychecks!"

      For many that means lack of paycheques.

    4. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      "For us that means paychecks!"

      Unless you're working for a US company, then it's your pay cheque you should be worried about, not just checking it's correct.

    5. Why Not?

      Indeed where there is confusion there is overtime!

      Thanks Hedley !

    6. John G Imrie Silver badge

      For us that means paychecks!

      Just make sure you are payed in Euros

    7. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      And therein lies the problem. there are people pushing Brexit that basically want a broken country, to cash in fixing it.

      Too many Brexit voters are simply too stupid to see they are being manipulated.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "...there are people pushing Brexit that basically want a broken country..."

        On the one hand I think that the people who voted for Brexit did so because of a delusional belief that the many problems the UK faces were caused by other countries and not by ourselves. This view was enthusiastically promoted by David Cameron's government throughout his time as PM because it was pretty effective at diverting criticism away from the Tories. As we know though, it resulted in him being hoist with his own petard.

        But on the other hand, I don't think the UK will be broken badly enough to force Brexiters to reappraise their delusions; they'll just carry on blaming the EU.

        I fear that things must get a lot worse before they can start getting better; we really do seem to be in a 'you can't get there from here' position. Quite frankly, I'm just glad I'm not young anymore, as it won't affect me very much, and I'm glad I grew up when I did and not now, but I'm worried for the young people who will have to deal with the future.

      2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Unhappy

        "oo many Brexit voters are simply too stupid to see they are being manipulated."

        That's why they are called "Banjo's"

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

    "Are you certain you be able to travel and work within the EU without a visa after April 2019" ?

    I have. And had to prove it. But not with a UK passport.

    1. yossarianuk

      Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

      You know some good people smugglers ?

      1. Mark 85 Silver badge

        Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

        Yes, but they're all busy smuggling people into the US. Or so some folks would have us believe.

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

          You know some good people smugglers ?

          We could just dig a tunnel.

          All we need is a giant vaulting horse near Dover and a lot of people wandering around dropping dirt out of their trousers

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

            "..and a lot of people wandering around dropping dirt out of their trousers"

            it's Kent. you'll find plenty of those.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: You know some good people smugglers ?

        all them lorries that bring foreign scum to our beloved paradise, surely they must be going back empty, there's money in them trailers...

    2. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

      Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

      This is why I'm frantically researching my Irish heritage, in the hopes I can get my Irish passport before Brexit.

      1. Warm Braw Silver badge

        Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

        I'm frantically researching my Irish heritage

        You are at least still entitled to an Irish bank account and the Common Travel Area means you can move there and take advantage of the health care system, even if only temporarily (check out the rents in Dublin...). Even if there is a "hard" Brexit, you should still be able to travel from the UK to Belfast and cross the border (either officially or otherwise) and thence to the continent and beyond.

        So even if there is no UK-Europe transport and there are emergency exchange controls, there is an escape route if you are prepared!

      2. BongoJoe

        Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

        This is why I'm frantically researching my Irish heritage, in the hopes I can get my Irish passport before Brexit.

        I've found a way to get a French passport and citizenship. The only drawback is that I would need to spend three years in the French Foreign Legion first...

        1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

          Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

          Say hello to Ms May when you're there

        2. Zippy´s Sausage Factory
          Joke

          Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

          The only drawback is that I would need to spend three years in the French Foreign Legion first...

          The cliché is that people join the foreign legion to forget. And when those three years are up, you've forgotten why you signed up in the first place...

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

        I should be able to prove that I am also Italian... with a lot of document hunting...

      4. ZSn

        Re: Anyone else being asked by agencies ...

        @Zippy´s Sausage Factory

        If you have a grandparent (grandmother preferably) that was born in any part of Ireland then you can get one. First you need to get on the Foreign Birth Register:

        https://www.dfa.ie/passports-citizenship/citizenship/born-abroad/registering-a-foreign-birth/

        The required paperwork can take a while to get together, the list is long, depending upon what you already have/know. Once you submit the paperwork it takes *up to* six months to process (currently about four to five months, but can be longer depending how complete/complex you paperwork is). So, if you know your family tree and have the paperwork already, and counting in 1 month to get the actually passport you could just do it before brexit day. Perhaps.

        Good luck!

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No shit, Sherlock?

    The UK government has left its preparation for a no-deal Brexit too late, while secrecy around negotiations has left businesses unable to prepare, a report has said.

    Why do we need a report on this? We can all see it for ourselves, whichever way we voted.

    Hands up all in favour of executing every member of Parliament and all of the Westminster civil service when they botch Brexit.

    1. Flocke Kroes Silver badge

      Re: No shit, Sherlock?

      The problem with getting rid of politicians - no matter what method you use - is that the replacements are even worse. Executing the Westminster civil will require setting up a new working group and hiring staff to investigate the most cost intensive method. Start with a £100M budget and a two year deadline then after five years and £500M the project will be abandoned due to cost and restarted a year later.

      1. Stoneshop Silver badge
        Go

        Re: No shit, Sherlock?

        The problem with getting rid of politicians - no matter what method you use - is that the replacements are even worse.

        You could try forming an anarcho-syndicalist commune, with individuals[0] taking turns to act as sort of executive officer for the week...

        [0] you're all individuals.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: No shit, Sherlock?

          " you're all individuals."

          I'm not.

    2. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: No shit, Sherlock?

      You shouldn't blame the Civil Service. After all, they were only following orders.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: No shit, Sherlock?

        "After all, they were only following orders."

        More likely trying to guess what the orders might be when they finally get them, probably about the end of the second week of March.

        1. A.P. Veening

          Re: No shit, Sherlock?

          "More likely trying to guess what the orders might be when they finally get them, probably about the end of the second week of March."

          You are correct in your estimation when you include the correct year, which will be 2020 (if they hurry).

        2. Stoneshop Silver badge
          Devil

          Re: No shit, Sherlock?

          More likely trying to guess what the orders might be when they finally get them, probably about the end of the second week of March.

          What year?

    3. Teiwaz Silver badge

      Re: No shit, Sherlock?

      Hands up all in favour of executing every member of Parliament and all of the Westminster civil service when they botch Brexit.

      I'd rather see them rounded up and incarcerated in the woefully underfunded prison system until such time as they can be tried for treason.

      And finally some sort of register put in place to stop the incompetent ever being able to manage anything ever again.

      Over all it'd be more just and longer drawn out than something terminal.

    4. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: No shit, Sherlock?

      "Why do we need a report on this? We can all see it for ourselves, whichever way we voted."

      I doubt it. There are plenty in denial. They believe it's the best of all options. If they get their way they'll blame the consequences of the Remainers.

      1. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

        Re: No shit, Sherlock?

        We send £350M a week to Westminster, vote to leave the UK and we can spend that on the NHS instead!

    5. ThatOne Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: No shit, Sherlock?

      Hey, you can't blame them for trying to imitate the example of the successful cousins: They undertook to make Great Britain great again, also build a wall on the European border and make the Europeans pay for it. What's to blame?...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: No shit, Sherlock?

        > successful cousins

        Not sure who you're meaning with that term.

    6. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No shit, Sherlock?

      > Hands up all in favour of executing every member of Parliament

      Some members of Parliament voted against this Brexit nonsense.

      Those ones shouldn't be lumped in with the rest.

    7. Len Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      Re: No shit, Sherlock?

      Sorry, a bit more of a serious answer than you probably hoped to receive.

      First of all, I don't believe in executions (the closest I'd get is sending a marooned and friendless Boris Johnson to a German bunker with a bottle of vodka and a gun).

      I also don't believe in prosecuting MPs for political matters of conviction (being foreign agents, sex offenders, fraudsters etc. sure, not for political beliefs as that is a very slippery slope). If MPs have acted or reasoned appallingly it should be a matter of their constituents to deal with that.

      I do believe in prosecuting (ex-)members of the Cabinet. They are given special powers to execute on our behalf and if they are found to have been lying to the people, withholding facts, taking decisions in self interest instead of the country's interest they should face trial and possible prison sentences.

      If anything, it should act as a deterrent for any future cabinet members.

      1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

        Re: No shit, Sherlock?

        How about prosecuting MPs for criminal negligence?

        1. Ken 16 Silver badge
          Meh

          Re: No shit, Sherlock?

          Legislators would never pass that kind of law

      2. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

        Re: No shit, Sherlock?

        @Len

        You're going in the right direction. Killing people is wrong. And anyway, we'd have to pass a law to make killing MPs legal, and they're unlikely to do that.

        But in terms of Cabinet members (and others - Farage)...

        Treason Act 1351, as amended reads:

        "or be adherent to the King’s Enemies in his Realm, giving to them Aid and Comfort in the Realm, or elsewhere, and thereof be [X4probably] attainted of open Deed by [X5the People] of their Condition"

        1. Brexit will cause massive damage to the UK

        2. Who would want that to happen?

        3. Only enemies of the Queen and the UK. e.g. Putin - who welcomes Brexit and kills people in the UK. Sounds like an enemy to me.

        4. So, by implementing Brexit, they are giving Aid and Comfort

        5. The People can attest to that.

        Which makes them guilty of High Treason, which no longer has the death penalty. But they can spend the rest of their days on Dartmoor, breaking rocks and picking oakum.

        Can we crowdfund a prosecution?

  4. Zippy´s Sausage Factory
    Facepalm

    "The UK government has left its preparation for a no-deal Brexit too late"

    You could, in fairness, replace "a no-deal Brexit" with absolutely anything that this government has to plan for and that sentence would still stand up.

    1. Steve K Silver badge

      I think you mean ANY UK Government of the last 20 years....

      1. Hans 1 Silver badge
        Happy

        I think you mean ANY UK Government of the last 2^H40 years....

        TFTFY

    2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      "You could, in fairness, replace "a no-deal Brexit" with absolutely anything that this government has to plan for and that sentence would still stand up."

      Even if there is a deal, no one knows what it will/might be until it's all finally agreed anyway, so the upshot is, no one can be prepared for *any* deal.

      1. LDS Silver badge

        "Even if there is a deal"

        Actually, a deal could allow for a transition period which would give more time to prepare. The issue is a "no deal", because it would imply on March 29th, 2019 UK is fully outside EU with no transition period, and all previous EU agreements cease to be effective.

  5. codejunky Silver badge
    Alert

    Hmm

    I am just waiting for the amusing comments claiming May is not trying to keep us in and that somehow this is the brexiters fault for the somehow unclear result of 'we voted to leave the EU'.

    Somehow this is sure to be the fault of the leave voter for the gov not to be anticipating nor committed to leave, even though the leave voter voted to leave and we could start preparing for that pre handing in art50!

    Funny how Cameron didnt negotiate anything (and would be staying to negotiate) about leaving but having no plan to leave was brexiters fault. And now the claim is that May (campaigned to remain and has insisted on continuing negotiations the EU clearly stated were not available) is unprepared.

    Let me guess, some fool is going to insist it is the leave voters fault or even brexiters in government. Even though we are the ones not getting what was voted for.

    1. Steve K Silver badge

      Re: Hmm

      Even though we are the ones not getting what was voted for.

      Whichever way you voted, there was no soft or hard Brexit question - it was Leave or Remain.

      If we Leave then technically we are getting what we voted for as per the ballot paper.

      Cameron's complacency is to blame for the arguments over the sort of Brexit by choosing a single question.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Hmm

        Cameron's complacency is to blame for the arguments over the sort of Brexit by choosing a single question.

        And if it was multiple choice (A) Soft (B) Hard, or (C) Remain,

        then nothing would have happened, because the Remain would have been the biggest response.

        1. gnasher729 Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          "then nothing would have happened, because the Remain would have been the biggest response."

          Which in hindsight would have been the best choice, because right now we have the choice between a total disaster (whatever deal we get, and with almost two years wasted it won't be a good one), and an even worse disaster (no deal at all).

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: Hmm

            Which in hindforesight would have been the best choice

            FTFY

        2. Hans 1 Silver badge
          Coat

          Re: Hmm

          And if it was multiple choice (A) Soft (B) Hard, or (C) Remain

          No

          (A) WTO (B) customs union (C) single market (D) Remain

          If A+B+C > 1.5 D -> then the highest of ABC wins

          With the following help:

          A means bankruptcy, keeps Johnny foreigner out

          B means killing financial sector, keeps Johnny foreigner out

          C means no say in policies, allows Johnny foreigner in

          D means we have a say in policies, allows Johnny foreigner in

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Hmm

          "And if it was multiple choice (A) Soft (B) Hard, or (C) Remain,

          then nothing would have happened, because the Remain would have been the biggest response."

          Which would clearly be the democratic answer.

          1. Roland6 Silver badge

            Re: Hmm

            >then nothing would have happened, because the Remain would have been the biggest response.

            Not quite! :)

            By voting Remain, the UK would have had a seat at the table at the next round of EU negotiations, due to start in 2019, meaning the UK could influence the direction of travel. Assuming all the major UK political parties kept their promises, they would have to hold a referendum on whatever treaty was negotiated...

            Fundamentally, the UK referendum was held too early and poorly worded/considered.

      2. LDS Silver badge

        "Whichever way you voted, there was no soft or hard Brexit question"

        Well, what do you believe would have happened? The article about leaving EU and its two year deadline were well known. And the available options and consequences after it too.

        It wasn't in UK power, and its voters, to decided what kind of Brexit they would have got - that would have required a whole EU referendum, and the result I'm sure wouldn't have be in UK favor.

        The single question was right - UK could only decide to remain or exit.

        Pushing a Brexit without any clue about how to manage it is not only irresponsible, it's pure madness - especially if the only plan was to have the cake and eat it.

    2. Stoneshop Silver badge
      Headmaster

      Re: Hmm

      and we could start preparing for that pre handing in art50!

      You should be using past tense, 'should have started', as handing in your article 50 notice was 18 months ago.

      And the problem is, evidently, that you didn't start.

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: Hmm

        @ Rich 11

        "But the leading Brexiters did have a plan to leave, and they told us how it would all work out, back during the campaign"

        Well spotted. So why cant we? Why didnt we? Why instead are the brexiters forced out because we are not allowed to negotiate leave but instead must keep trying to 'negotiate' which we have been explicitly told by the EU 'in or out but no negotiation'. So why do the remainers cock this up so badly? Oh yeah they dont wanna leave.

        @ Jason Bloomberg

        "What did you expect when voting for what people promised who were not in a position to deliver that?"

        Actually they were and are. We can leave unilaterally without permission, asking to go to the bathroom or anything... we can leave. So yes it can be delivered. So instead of trying to remain the gov should have gone ahead with plans to leave and if the EU wanted to negotiate they know where we are.

        "And no one even knows what leavers voted for beyond "leaving""

        Noooo! Are you telling me the result was leave but you dont know what that means? We voted to leave, to go, not to remain... but you find it ambiguous? I am not quite sure how to explain this better but the result was to no longer be in the EU aka leave.

        "As much as one leaver says it means one thing another leaver will contradict them."

        Just like remainers. its a capitalist/socialist utopia. A globalist/protectionist structure. Democratic/protects citizens from governments. And so on. Also Junker is now asking that members surrender their veto over foreign policy in the ongoing vision of more Europe.

        "Trying to subvert things to force someone else to deliver something not clearly defined was always destined to be a disaster."

        And so it was when Osborne and Carney lied (King pointed that out) and Osborne directly threatened the population of the UK to get the 'right' result.

        1. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
          Facepalm

          Re: Hmm

          "And no one even knows what leavers voted for beyond "leaving""

          Noooo! Are you telling me the result was leave but you dont know what that means? We voted to leave, to go, not to remain... but you find it ambiguous? I am not quite sure how to explain this better but the result was to no longer be in the EU aka leave.

          And we are leaving so what the fuck are you complaining about?

          It is you leavers who cannot universally decide what "leaving" means, are disagreeing with each other over what "leaving" means, are showing "leaving" is ambiguous.

          But, go ahead, blame remainers for leaver's inability to agree on what "leaving" means.

          1. John Smith 19 Gold badge

            "It is you leavers who cannot universally decide what "leaving" means, "

            Correct.

            The Norway model? The Swiss model? The Canadian model? The "Bespoke" model?

            The totally f**king delusional Tinkerbell model?

            Like being arrested and handed a blank sheet of paper headed "Confessions" and being asked to sign it.

            And if you were a Leave voter, doing so.

        2. Dan 55 Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          I am not quite sure how to explain this better but the result was to no longer be in the EU aka leave.

          Well done. You voted leave. You voted to no longer be in the EU. Now tell us your plan for undoing 40 years of treaties with the rest of the EU, disentangling the UK's economy from the rest of the EU's, not upending the lives of EU citizens in the UK and British citizens in the EU, and not rebooting the Troubles.

          Nobody else has been able to, least of all Vote Leave, the ERG, or Boris Johnson.

          1. jaywin

            Re: Hmm

            He already has - we just up sticks and deny we're members any more, ignoring any responsibilities we had as part of that membership and chanting Jerusalem back at anyone who disagrees.

            It's only the remainers who are so blinkered by experts and laws and international bodies such that they can't see the unicorns, who think there might be any negative consequences of such a departure. If they'd only believe a little more strongly then the fairy's might liv, erm, actually, isn't that a children's book?

            1. This post has been deleted by its author

          2. YARR
            Megaphone

            Here's my plan...

            1. Don't sign any international agreement with arbitrary rules that are intended to make withdrawal difficult or impossible. e.g. Imposing an arbitrary period of 2 years to disentangle your economy is not realistic, therefore this expectation should never have been written into EU law. The rule that says you can't negotiate trade relations with other nations until after you have left the block should never have been accepted since it obviously intended to make leaving difficult.

            2. Don't invoke the process of withdrawing from an international agreement unless you are ready to withdraw.

            If we had a competent pro-British government in power from the begining, neither of these mistakes would have been made. It's evident that those in power are determined force political integration and global government and to make an example of anyone who defies their wishes.

            1. Yes Me Silver badge
              WTF?

              Re: Here's my plan...

              Imposing an arbitrary period of 2 years to disentangle your economy is not realistic, therefore this expectation should never have been written into EU law.
              You do know, don't you, that it was a British official who drafted Article 50?

              That aside, here's the plan, apparently: Replace more than 40 years development of paperwork and IT systems for handling trade with Europe in less than 6 months, including specification, design, coding, debugging and go-live.

              Good luck with that.

            2. Roland6 Silver badge

              Re: Here's my plan...

              re: Here's my plan...

              1. Don't sign any international agreement with arbitrary rules that are intended to make withdrawal difficult or impossible.

              ...

              Perhaps this can be simplified to when asked to write the rules, stop and think, at some future date you may wish to avail yourself of the opportunities those rules grant you...

              1. codejunky Silver badge

                Re: Here's my plan...

                @ Roland6

                "Perhaps this can be simplified to when asked to write the rules, stop and think"

                Well said. Brought to mind the following-

                http://www.continentaltelegraph.com/brexit/an-interesting-revelation-of-what-the-european-union-is-actually-for/

                1. Roland6 Silver badge

                  Re: Here's my plan...

                  @codejunky - it is one of the reasons why I am not totally opposed to having hereditary peers (with children/grandchildren) in the HoL; their minds aren't totally on the next election and clinging on to office, but on what mess they will be passing on to their grandchildren.

                  1. LDS Silver badge

                    "but on what mess they will be passing on to their grandchildren."

                    I think their minds are very mostly occupied on how to pass their wealth down to the children and grandchildren, and who cares of the plebs...

                    The hereditary system never worked well to create wealth for the largest percentage of citizens possible. Wasn't Brexit about that, too?

                    Didn't they vote against the "elites"? What is the eponymous "elite" if not the British royal family and its cohort of peers?

                    1. Roland6 Silver badge

                      Re: "but on what mess they will be passing on to their grandchildren."

                      The hereditary system never worked well to create wealth for the largest percentage of citizens possible.

                      That is the challenge with all systems of representation, how to align the representative's personal interests with the interests of the country as a whole.

                2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
                  Coat

                  continentaltelegraph.com Is that Tim Worestall's new organ?

                  Inquiring minds....

                  1. codejunky Silver badge

                    Re: continentaltelegraph.com Is that Tim Worestall's new organ?

                    @ John Smith 19

                    Yes why?

        3. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          "So instead of trying to remain the gov should have gone ahead with plans to leave and if the EU wanted to negotiate they know where we are."

          From my outsider's point of view, it looks like the UK needs the EU more than the EU needs the UK. If that's true, then why would the EU bother?

          (As I said, I'm an outsider and so I don't know enough details to have an opinion on the underlying issue one way or another. But it does look like the power dynamic here favors the EU.)

          1. Jamie Jones Silver badge

            Re: Hmm

            "From my outsider's point of view, it looks like the UK needs the EU more than the EU needs the UK. If that's true, then why would the EU bother?"

            You've got it. Brexitter are like someone cancelling their gym membership, and then expecting to make some sort of deal allowing them access to the weights on a friday, in exchange for being able to use the rusty old exercise bike in the shed.

            Unfortunately, they still believe Brittania rules the waves, and the British empire is still a thing that those funny foreigners look up to.

          2. Ken 16 Silver badge
            Headmaster

            Re: Hmm

            Also every time the EU offered to negotiate on something the UK came up with another 'red line' they wouldn't negotiate on. So "we are where we are", a phrase which always means "up to our necks in completely avoidable shit".

        4. DougS Silver badge

          @codejunky

          Or is your name is a misprint, and it should be "cokejunky"? Because I don't otherwise see how you can possibly blame remainers for the EU's refusal to negotiate! Anyone with half a brain should have known it was obvious that the EU would make leaving as difficult as possible for the UK, as an object lesson to any other country who even considers leaving.

          Likely the EU hopes to make things suck so badly for the UK that you'll come crawling back, to be told they'll only let you in if you go full EU, including adopting the euro. I'm sure the large majority in the UK would be against that, even most remainers, so you are going to have to deal with the fact that the EU is not going to make ANYTHING easy on the UK going forward. They will in fact be going out of their way to make things as difficult for you as they possibly can.

          This was all obvious to any outside observer, the fact that brexiters were dumb enough to believe the EU would be eager to negotiate trade and other deals with the UK to gain access to their markets shows brexiteer ignorance and how overly important they believe their country to be in the grand scheme of Europe. As well as how eager the EU would be to insure that no other country sees the UK getting out easily and cleanly and think "hey, we could do that too".

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: @codejunky

            "Because I don't otherwise see how you can possibly blame remainers for the EU's refusal to negotiate!"

            I've said several times he'd eventually come out with the "No true Scotsman" excuse. What I didn't realise was he'd push it to such limits.

        5. Jamie Jones Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          Noooo! Are you telling me the result was leave but you dont know what that means? We voted to leave, to go, not to remain... but you find it ambiguous? I

          Don't act all sanctimonious. Your own leave campaigners don't even know what it means, seeing as it was all a bunch of lies:

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0xGt3QmRSZY

          From: this link:

          Absolutely nobody is talking about threatening our place in the single market’ – Conservative MEP Daniel Hannan

          "Only a madman would actually leave the Market" - Owen Paterson MP, Vote Leave backer

          And when you remember that Norway are in the Single Market but not the EU, it makes these quotes quite awkward reading.

          "Wouldn't it be terrible if we were really like Norway and Switzerland? Really? They're rich. They're happy. They're self-governing" - Nigel Farage, Ukip leader

          "The Norwegian option, the EEA option, I think that it might be initally attractive for some business people" - Matthew Elliot, Vote Leave chief executive

          "Increasingly, the Norway option looks the best for the UK" - Arron Banks, Leave.EU founder

          Those messages make uncomfortable reading when you look at the post-referendum discussion of what Britons voted for on June 23.

          Farage himself said less than two months after the poll that remaining in the Single Market would be a “betrayal” of the 17.4 million people who voted for Brexit.

        6. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          "Why instead are the brexiters forced out"

          They weren't. They had a chance to get their shit together when Cameron resigned. Instead they stabbed each other in the back and left it to May. Leave had their chance. They blew it. But if your version of Leave was "Out! Right now!" then this report tells you what the consequences would have been.

        7. gnasher729 Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          Actually, nobody voted for "leave". Or for "remain".

          Most people voted for "whatever is best for the country", or "whatever is best for me", plus far too many "whatever shows the politicians that I hate them all". Sure, there was huge disagreement what is best, but the huge majority voted for whatever is best.

          I suppose the ones putting their cross behind "leave" didn't expect the utter incompetence that this was handled with. Starting with a David Davis who was utterly, utterly incompetent and lazy. Who didn't have the slightest clue how the EU work. Starting with wanting to negotiate individual trade deals with Germany, France etc. and being too stupid to know that this CANNOT happen as long as these countries are in the EU. Totally unprepared. And then to try to save his job, when he figured out he couldn't deliver anything, he started these nonsense talks about "no deal" brexit. "Hey guys, I totally fucked up, but don't worry, we will be fine".

          Then comes Raab. For about a week who looked as if he was seriously negotiating, then he starts the same rubbish about leaving with no deal. Not paying the bill. What does he think will happen? I think that the French would decide that without payment, they cannot pay more than one French customs officer, so the amount of goods going between UK and France will be practically zero.

          With a competent government, this could all have worked out fine. Alas...

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            Re: Hmm

            "With a competent government, this could all have worked out fine."

            Sir, I admire your optimism on both counts.

        8. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          "Noooo! Are you telling me the result was leave but you dont know what that means? We voted to leave, to go, not to remain... but you find it ambiguous? I am not quite sure how to explain this better but the result was to no longer be in the EU aka"

          So, you're a hard Brexiteer. Obviously that's what you voted for. But it's quite evident that many who voted for Leave had other ideas, including a soft, negotiated exit. You can deny that as much as you like, but thems the facts. You only have to look at the range of public statements on exiting the EU from the various factions of politicians to confirm this.

          As for you're comment about remainers not agreeing on their position, I suspect you've not thought that one through very well. A vote for remain was a vote for the status quo. Everyone voting remain knew exactly what that entailed.

          1. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

            Re: Hmm

            @John Brown

            But it's quite evident that many who voted for Leave had other ideas, including a soft, negotiated exit.

            I think many of them belonged to the "I still want to use the golf course even though I've resigned and no longer pay subs" tendency.

        9. georgezilla

          Re: Hmm

          " ... and if the EU wanted to negotiate they know where we are. ... "

          You are the ones who voted to leave. Not the E.U.. So why should they come to you to "negotiate".

          You made the decision to leave. Stop trying to pretend that you are the victim.

          You are getting what you asked for. Isolation. So own it. Live it. Enjoy it. Suck it up snowflake.

    3. Rich 11 Silver badge

      Re: Hmm

      but having no plan to leave was brexiters fault.

      But the leading Brexiters did have a plan to leave, and they told us how it would all work out, back during the campaign. The easiest thing in the world, we were told. Simple. Not a problem. Dozens of free trade deals signed on Day One. How could they know that unless they had a plan? Surely you aren't go to ... shudder ... tell us they were lying?

    4. Jason Bloomberg Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: Hmm

      Even though we are the ones not getting what was voted for.

      What did you expect when voting for what people promised who were not in a position to deliver that?

      And no one even knows what leavers voted for beyond "leaving" which can be interpreted in many different ways. As much as one leaver says it means one thing another leaver will contradict them.

      Trying to subvert things to force someone else to deliver something not clearly defined was always destined to be a disaster.

    5. 45RPM Silver badge

      Re: Hmm

      I think that, given the lack of democratic process in this whole debacle, I can lay the blame squarely at the door of the promoters of Brexit.

      The terms of the referendum were that it was advisory only (if you don’t believe me, go and reread them for yourself here - https://fullfact.org/media/uploads/HoCL.PNG). This is important because some people voted in a deliberately contrary way in order to give Cameron’s government a bit of a prod - it is arguable that many might not have voted in this manner (or, perhaps, at all) if they’d realised the consequences.

      In any case, the vote was so close that UKIP themselves were gearing up to demand a rerun if it had been so close the other way. There’s a difference though - if we’d voted to remain we could still have another Brexit referendum in the future, ad infinitum. Since we apparently voted to leave, by the slimmest of margins, and since the government is hell bent on following the wishes of the far right, we’ll get no chances of a do-over. We’ll already have committed economic, political and diplomatic suicide. There’s no going back.

      It is self evident that the only sensible course of action is to rerun the referendum, and even in the event of a close vote, withdraw from Brexit. Make no mistake, this disaster will have caused significant damage even if we do - we can’t go back to the way things were before Farage and his lunatic fringe began to get their way, we can’t regain the trust that we’ve squandered or reclaim the organisations which have now left us for friendlier European nations, but we can (perhaps) stop a bad situation from getting any worse.

      1. Global Colder

        Re: Hmm

        Referendum was advisory but and this is the big but, Cameron told the UK he would honour the result win or lose. Every MP voted and the result was to allow the referendum and follow the result.

        He sent the infamous £9.2 million leaflet to every one repeating this

        https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/515068/why-the-government-believes-that-voting-to-remain-in-the-european-union-is-the-best-decision-for-the-uk.pdf

        Look on penultimate page:-The referendum on Thursday, 23rd June is your chance to decide if we should remain in or leave the European Union.

        The Government believes it is in the best interests of the UK to remain in the EU. This is the way to protect jobs, provide security, and strengthen the UK’s economy for every family in this country – a clear path into the future, in contrast to the uncertainty of leaving. This is your decision. The Government will implement what you decide.

        When he lost and resigned, a certain Mrs May took over. Want to guess what she did?

        Called a General Election and on both the Conservative and Labour manifestos was a pledge to fully implement Brexit.

        David Davis then tabled the Withdrawal Agreement and Implementation Bill. and it passed though parliament. The Queen then signed off on this bill.

        So although the referendum is advisory they did pledge on numerous occasions to honour the result win or lose, implement it, they voted on it several times and even passed it through and gained Royal Assent for the bill. They sent in Article 50 which is unstoppable, it can be delayed, but we leave and if we want to rejoin its a new referendum but only legal after we leave.

        1. Lars Silver badge
          Happy

          Re: Hmm

          "Article 50 which is unstoppable".

          No it's not, it's quite clear, and has been pointed out that the 27 would accept it. Too much time and money has already been spent around the EU on this idiotic folly. All based on feelings, lies, not facts.

          And by the way, no union likes to lose members, some Brits would not like too lose Scotland either, remember the Scottish referendum - "stronger together".

          How mean and awful is a yacht club if they ask you to pull your yacht out of the marina and pay your debt in the bar and restaurant before leaving.

    6. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Hmm

      "Funny how Cameron didnt negotiate anything (and would be staying to negotiate) about leaving"

      Why did you expect him to? It wasn't what he wanted. It wasn't what he campaigned for. It wasn't something he believed in. Why should he be expected to implement something to which he was opposed?

      "Even though we are the ones not getting what was voted for."

      Just what did you vote for?

    7. Jess

      Re: Hmm

      By not defining whether leave meant leave the EU but remain in the EEA (perhaps by returning to the EFTA which we left to join the EEC) or leave everything, leave voters were voting for a leap in the dark.

      What if we are pushed into a big hole? That's project fear, no one is talking about being pushed into a big hole.

      The end result is we are jumping into the hole. (Not being pushed)

      So whose fault is it? Those who gave the government an open mandate or those who scammed them into doing so?

      1. LDS Silver badge

        "leave meant leave the EU but remain in the EEA"

        How, when EEA too requires the free movement of people, refusing which was one of the main drivers of Brexit? Moreover it also requires to abide to a log of EU rules, with far less opportunities to influence them.

        Also, AFAIK joining the EEA is not automatic at all - you can apply, but then again negotiation starts before a country is accepted.

        So, while it could have been asked in a referendum, nothing would have been automatic once UK had decided to leave EU - it depends on the other countries.

        Anyway, referenda are built on the Yes/No concept, so there could not be ambiguous result. With a tree-answer one, say "EU", "EEA", "Brexit", if each of them got around 33%, what would have people chosen?

        1. Roland6 Silver badge

          Re: "leave meant leave the EU but remain in the EEA"

          @LDS - "Also, AFAIK joining the EEA is not automatic at all"

          The UK however, is already a member of the EEA... The membership rules (n the relevant treaties) say lots about applying for membership, but zero about the criteria for continued membership...

          But you are on the right track, as Brexit developed, the nutters went from simply leaving the EU, to demanding that the EU had zero influence over UK affairs - deluding themselves into believing that the post-leave EU-UK relationship will have none of the attributes of the relationships between China and its neighbours...

          1. LDS Silver badge

            "The UK however, is already a member of the EEA..."

            It's unclear if UK, which is part of EEA through its EU membership, will still be in EEA when it leaves. Anyway membership in EEA implies more or less the same "freedoms" of EU, including the freedom of movement - is UK ready to accept it? I doubt.

            1. Roland6 Silver badge

              Re: "The UK however, is already a member of the EEA..."

              >It's unclear if UK, which is part of EEA through its EU membership, will still be in EEA when it leaves.

              I suggest you read the relevant treaties, it is totally clear they support continued membership; obviously, if the UK pulled this card, we can expect some to want treaties amended... But perhaps that is because I'm coming at things from a UK legal perspective: if it isn't explicitly barred then it is allowed, whereas my understanding of some other systems is that if it isn't explicitly allowed then it is barred...

              The issues with the "freedoms" I suggest is more to do with the wants of the Brexit nutters and not necessarily what "Leave" meant; hence why all the discussion about differing flavours of 'Brexit'.

              > is UK ready to accept it? I doubt.

              I suspect this consideration applies to any Brexit deal, even the ones that Mogg et al desire. the problem is that the current generation of Conservative MPs have shown themselves to be weak and vacuous, so would you accept any 'deal' they had negotiated at face value?

    8. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

      Re: Hmm

      but having no plan to leave was brexiters fault

      Errrm....it was their great idea. You mean they hadn't prepared a detailed plan for when their wish was granted? Who did they expect to do the donkey work?

      Can we have a new referendum: Should the UK population move to Mars?

      When we vote Yes we'll leave it to the government to work out the details. It'll be the easiest mass-migration in history.

      [I am getting too cynical and sarcastic. But what else is left? Running wild in the House of Commons with a Combine Harvester just isn't my style.]

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: Hmm

        I have to say I feel a sense of pride seeing how my comments have whipped up such shrieking. I wasnt disappointed, there is plenty blaming leave for the remain governments actions and even an apologist for Cameron to offer a referendum with only one outcome considered (the 'right' one).

        A few people still seeming confused that leave is clearly defined as we leave. Mr no true Scotsman still doesnt seem to realise his Scotsman in government (a remain PM and remain elements in gov) are making a wonderful mess. But then of course he and others blame leave for it (as I expected in my first comment).

        There is the amusement of someone still daring to accuse leave of lies which seemed to be less popular as we point out remain was built on lies as well as direct threats against the population by the Chancellor.

        There seem a few people who dont quite grasp a golf or gym membership and EU membership which is funny but adds little. A couple of people seem confused thinking I mean the EU need to negotiate with us, they dont. We also dont need permission to leave.

        Reading the responses though has brought up the usual FUD but not much new. At least the remainers got to vent I guess.

        1. Dan 55 Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          So, no idea then.

        2. LDS Silver badge

          "We also dont need permission to leave."

          Of course.

          Just, you need a permission if you wish to be still part of the custom union, or a a common market, etc. etc. with EU. You also need permission to delay the withdrawal beyond two years. And that implies negotiation. EU needed to negotiate especially because of EU citizens living in UK, and of course the economic implications.

          What we abroad don't understand if the Brexiters plan was an "hard Brexit" from beginning - for which you don't even need two years, artitcle 50 states that the treaties cease to be effective as soon as an agreement is reached (which could be also a "we don't need any deal, goodbye") - or there was no plan at all, or simply they believed EU would have been so scared it would have accepted all UK conditions (the "have the cake and eat it" plan).

          All three options looks pretty stupid ones.

          1. codejunky Silver badge

            Re: "We also dont need permission to leave."

            @ LDS

            "Just, you need a permission if you wish to be still part of the custom union, or a a common market, etc. etc."

            Absolutely. No referendum could offer anything but in or out because we can unilaterally leave and we were not being kicked out.

            "You also need permission to delay the withdrawal beyond two years."

            There is a slight get out clause that the 2 years is from handing in art50. Something which should only be done under the assumption of leaving the EU (as that is the point). So why didnt the remain PM Cameron preparing for the possible outcome and why hasnt our remain PM prepared in time (based on the article claiming the gov is not ready)? As you say it would require permission to delay withdrawal.

            "And that implies negotiation. EU needed to negotiate especially because of EU citizens living in UK, and of course the economic implications."

            The thing with negotiation is it is voluntary. The UK wanted to negotiate (some with pipe dreams e.g. May, Corbyn) but the EU set its explicit terms to be met before negotiation, and they were unacceptable to us. That isnt an accusation or blame against either the UK nor EU it just means no negotiation. Unfortunately May (remainer as we know) didnt accept that and so on it goes.

            "What we abroad don't understand if the Brexiters plan was an "hard Brexit" from beginning"

            It was pretty simple. We leave the EU and if they are willing to sort out a trade deal then excellent (for both sides) but we wanted to get out of the EU for various reasons. Some of us wanted to get away from the wreck of multiple self inflicted crises, or the ever closer union problem, or the imposition of an unelected government (unelected by us), the protectionism, etc. There are plenty reasons to want out as the EU is finding with various member countries increasingly voting for anti EU parties.

            Some will have voted for racist reasons and some for globalist reasons, just the same as remainers. But not being taken over by the EU is a very important issue for people.

            The main point I was making is that people complaining about how the government are handling brexit will be on both sides. But there is no misunderstanding by leavers that the PM is for remain and the gov is responsible for delivering on leaving the EU. Lack of preparation and such is squarely on the doorstep of those who dont seem to be willing to deliver on leave. The absolute base situation which brexiters in government seem to have grasped quickly is leaving without any deal, and anything better is just gravy. But remaining in the EU would be worse than leaving without a deal.

            1. LDS Silver badge

              "but the EU set its explicit terms to be met before negotiation"

              That's part of the negotiation. EU is built of four specific freedoms. You can't get one of them without the others. That's not negotiable, and it was right to establish it from the beginning.

              Cameron was a fool and used the referendum as a politician tactic, without assessing the bigger picture and consequences. He had just got excellent conditions for UK from EU, which no other country had, so he believed to win easily. He didn't. But he went away - why no Brexit leader stepped in with his or her well thought plan? Why wasting time asking for conditions that couldn't be met?

              "imposition of an unelected government"

              By someone from a country with a wholly unelected chamber, whose member are there just because they're born in the "right family", and with an unelected head of state, again, there by "divine right", it's very funny.

              EU Parliament is elected, and the Commission members are selected by elected EU governments.

              "various member countries increasingly voting for anti EU parties."

              Just most of those parties got the power by distributing billions of EU funds, like in Poland and Hungary... pure hypocrites.

              "But remaining in the EU would be worse than leaving without a deal."

              Time will tell...

            2. Dan 55 Silver badge

              Re: "We also dont need permission to leave."

              All that second post, when you could have just posted "I've still got no idea" instead.

              1. codejunky Silver badge

                Re: "We also dont need permission to leave."

                @ Dan 55

                All that second post, when you could have just posted "I've still got no idea" instead.

                I dont need to post that you have no idea. But you dont need to keep repeating, I read it the first time.

        3. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Hmm

          > I have to say I feel a sense of pride seeing how my comments have whipped up such shrieking. I wasnt disappointed

          You are admitting to being a troll, in other words.

          Not that we need your confession, the rest of your post is full of fluffy non-specific and plainly false contentious rubbish, designed to annoy without providing any real facts.

          Your talent is wasted here - you should move to "Youtube comments".

        4. Jamie Jones Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          Congratulations, brexitters. Rather than being aligned with people who actually give a shit about the citizens, we are going to become aligned with administrations who's only goal is to asset strip and rob the citizens for their corporate buddies. No wonder Mogg and Johnson are rubbing their hands with glee:

          A radical blueprint for a free trade deal between the UK and the US that would see the NHS opened to foreign competition, a bonfire of consumer and environmental regulations and freedom of movement between the two https://www.cato.org/publications/white-paper/ideal-us-uk-free-trade-agreement-free-traders-perspective

          I love Americans, but their political system is NOT a model we want to follow...

          1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
            Unhappy

            "I love Americans, but their political system is NOT a model we want to follow..."

            It is essentially one they inherited from the British in 1700's for running a parish council.

            And does not seem to have been updated in any useful way since.

            It is not fit for purpose to run a British parish council, let alone the most powerful state in the Western world.

          2. Malthus

            Re: Hmm

            Totally agree. This has been the plan all along, Farage spends years claiming EU is source of all evil. Incompetent politicians blame EU for their own folly. Leave campaign supported and funded by Putin. Result is selling of UK to USA. Why? To weaken the EU, win for Putin, win for Trump, both benefit from weaker EU. Trump gets to asset strip UK and can continue to play his trade wars without opposition from EU negotiation strength. Putin can expand his empire again in eastern Europe. Ordinary Europeans get screwed. Neither of those "superpowers" cares a jot.

      2. daflibble

        Re: Hmm

        I'd vote for moving the UK population to move to Mars. This would be a far reaching visionary future for the country the only sort of thing that's going to save us from the CF called Brexit.

        1. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

          Re: Hmm

          I'd vote for moving the UK population to move to Mars.

          Good idea. We can build two large spaceships - the L Ark and the R Ark. The L Ark would leave first (as is their right) and never be heard from again. The R Ark would experience technical issues and have to cancel lift-off, with the colonists forced to Remain in a (much less crowded) UK.

    9. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Unhappy

      "It is you leavers who cannot universally decide what "leaving" means, "

      Au contraire you are getting exactly what you voted for.

      It might not be what (inside your own head) you believed "Brexit" would mean but then who f**king cares about your opinion of what Brexit is?

      You still seem quite young so you're going to have lots of time to put into effect a very valuable lesson you're in the the process of learning.

      Never f**king trust a Tory posh boy.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Ah AC here kisses Irish passport and admires how handsome they are in their Irish driving licence picture....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Good luck with that mate (genuinely).

      Of all EU economies, Ireland is the most exposed to Brexit downsides, and as a dressing on that dish it is also persona non gratis in Brussels on account of two decades of "tax management". That engagement with overseas corporations went sour during the Great Financial Crisis 1, who knows what will happen in GFC 2, but before that there's all the EU vs Apple case to unravel, with all the consequential impacts on other Eire domiciled US and EU businesses.

      I can't see any winners here. Despite selective animosities Eire and the UK ought to be on the same side, and operating as coupled economic bloc (hell, we had broadly freedom of movement for what, seventy years before Schengen?)

      One thing I would highlight is that both you and us Brits were promised a vote on the Lisbon treaty. We never got that, you did, and clearly you got it wrong because you were made to vote again until you gave the right answer. We've got a different outcome on a different vote, but as ever the fuckwit politicians manage to screw it up.

      To summarise: You're fucked, we're fucked, and if none of this had ever happened, the EU would still be fucked. Wait until Germany and France have to choose between letting Turkey join, or the migrant floodgates opening.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        RE: Good luck with that mate (genuinely).

        seems at least one person doesn't *quite* grasp the essence of "Freedom of Movement".

        Having an *EU* passport allows the PP to live and work in anyone of the E27 countries he chooses to. Not just Ireland.

        Meanwhile, people who don't have an EU passport aren't being considered for roles which may involve EU travel - which is a surprising amount.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Are you saying I'm ugly....? ;) My UK passport picture is better than my Irish one in fairness. I'm looking forward to the UK passport being blue. Will help me easily pick up the correct one as I look through the drawer in the future...

        1. A.P. Veening

          Passport

          "I'm looking forward to the UK passport being French Navy blue."

          FTFY

      3. Dan 55 Silver badge

        We never got that, you did, and clearly you got it wrong because you were made to vote again until you gave the right answer.

        Read A second Brexit referendum could be for the best: look at Ireland and Lisbon and notice how the description of the first vote and the campaign leading up to it is a practically a copy of the UK's referendum and what changes were made before the second vote.

      4. Lars Silver badge
        Happy

        @AC

        "Despite selective animosities Eire and the UK ought to be on the same side, and operating as coupled economic bloc".

        Some "big brother" attitude there, "come save our arse with the boarder".

        The Irish know they gain from membership with the EU and they are no longer as dependent on the UK as before. The biggest export country is the USA to day.

        Brexit do create problems, all the same, as most of their exports go via the UK, and they might have to think again, supporting local ports perhaps or ship directly to Rotterdam or similar. No Brexit dividend there.

        The "persona non gratis in Brussels" is nonsense. it's like claiming the UK is persona non gratis (to use your phrase) in Brussels because of some relation to tax-havens. I believe the UK government was as keen as the rest of the EU to tackle that problem.

        Perhaps, indeed there is some truth in claiming the only Brexit dividend, and for the very few architects behind Brexit, has something to do with the tax-havens.,

        PS. grata, while gratis fits your comment well.

  7. fidodogbreath Silver badge

    Situation Normal

    In this scenario, the IfG said, “just a fraction of the processes and systems required for life outside the EU will be in place” – there will be only time for “temporary sticking plasters”

    So, a typical government operation then.

  8. Dr Paul Taylor

    So join your local campaign group to stop this

    www.IStopBrexit.info

    The campaign is desperately short of IT competent people.

    It would be great if someone could offer me a Virtual Private Server with LAMP for this site,

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So join your local campaign group to stop this

      www.IStopBrexit.info

      The campaign is desperately short of IT competent people.

      "There are no cookies and no Javascript on this site."

      Amazingly, there is CSS, but the page is formatted in such a way as to make it

      (1) incomprehensible (2) Look like it came from 1973 (3) give me a headache.

      I rather fancy FrontPage could have done a better job.

    2. Jamie Jones Silver badge

      Re: So join your local campaign group to stop this

      It would be great if someone could offer me a Virtual Private Server with LAMP for this site,

      I offer - no charge, of course. And anything else you need.

      1. Dr Paul Taylor

        Re: So join your local campaign group to stop this

        Big thanks to Jamie for setting this site up on his server, where it is now live.

        The rude AC appears not to have looked beyond the front page to the site itself. That front page was edited from something else in a considerable hurry in the half hour before I gave a demo. It was subsequently replaced with something cleaner. The program-generated main pages have no CSS, Javascript or cookies, but maybe (Jamie or) I will get round to writing some CSS to smarten it up later.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Brexit

    I can't wait for next year. It's going to be ****ing hilarious.

    "Brexit means Brexit!"

    Chortle.

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Thumb Up

      "I can't wait for next year. It's going to be ****ing hilarious. ""Brexit means Brexit!""

      F**k yeah.

  10. Cynic_999 Silver badge

    Y2K all over again

    On the day we leave, deal or no deal the Earth will keep turning and nothing too serious will happen. Life will go on, things will get done in pretty much the same way, and problems will be quickly solved or temporary workarounds agreed pragmatically between the interested parties even if the bureaucracy is not yet in place. The only "insurmountable" issues will be those deliberately engineered by people with an axe to grind in order to prove a point.

    I am totally opposed to leaving the EU for several reasons, but that doesn't mean that I think that leaving will cause immediate disaster.

    1. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: Y2K all over again

      Disaster probably not. That should be reserved for, well, real disasters. But there consequences could vary from inconvenient to downright severe. I'm sure the transitional arrangement with the backstop will kick in come what may but supply chains, customs, flights, banking, etc. are all likely to be disrupted to an unknown degree.

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Y2K all over again

      "I am totally opposed to leaving the EU for several reasons, but that doesn't mean that I think that leaving will cause immediate disaster."

      More like a slow motion car crash.

      1. Mike Pellatt

        Re: Y2K all over again

        More like a slow motion car crash.

        I'm not so sure. Quite how all those JIT supply chains will work with just an extra 3 minutes per lorry at the border is far from obvious. The car crash could well be quite quick.

      2. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: Y2K all over again

        @ Doctor Syntax

        "More like a slow motion car crash."

        Ok lets say we are going to go through a slow motion car crash. That is your assumption which we dont all agree on but lets look at the situation. We are already in a slow motion car crash being in the EU which is showing increasing signs of ever increasing damage.

        The EU is in multiple self inflicted crises. It is without a doubt and with no credible debate against it. So remaining in the burning twisted metal that the EU is turning into does not sound clever. The presidents and leaders of member countries have no faith in the staying power of the EU, we are constantly being told 'X could be the end of the EU' by the very people trying to keep it going.

        Throughout the member countries parties with views that would repel voters are gaining votes on the simple platform of opposing their membership to the EU or its dreadful currency. Macron pointed out the French could vote out if he gave them a choice. Italy is the current thread puller threatening to take down the project. Greece was screwed by the EU and their currency.

        As for stronger together the EU ran away from Russia in Ukraine and Trump is making them look foolish. At one point they were considering detention centres for immigrants to try and fix the immigration crisis caused by Germany.

        The Eurozone is still behind the recovery and hopefully this year QE will finally stop increasing. And the latest demand from Junker- he wants the members to give up their veto on foreign policy. Ever closer union must go on, all sink together.

        So you think we might be going into a slow motion car crash, but we are certainly leaving a slow motion car crash currently in the destructive stages.

        1. LDS Silver badge

          Re: Y2K all over again

          1) The EU is in multiple self inflicted crises.

          EU got too big too fast, that could be true. No one could envision USSR would have crumbled so quickly, and so many countries would have asked to join. And a fully US born financial crisis hitting a few years later it allowed in Eastern countries didn't help at all.

          Other crisis, like that in Lybia, have also many UK fingerprints, right? Again, an intervention without a plan about what to do after.... Cameron will be remembered for that and Brexit. Great record.

          Others have US ones all around, like Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq and the large number of immigrants. So, not always "self-inflicted". EU was caught in the middle of ill-advised and worse managed acts by US.

          It is true that the immigrant crisis has been mismanaged, and leaving the full burden on the Mediterranean countries like Italy and Greece greatly contribute to give power to the anti-EU parties.

          2) Greece and Italy

          These are two perfect example of self-inflicted crisis. Both created huge debts all on their own by politicians to buy easy consensus, and hoped to offload it to other countries through EU. It didn't work, and they made the EU the "mother of all their troubles". Actually, without EU and the Euro they would probably look like Venezuela today. Mistakes has been made by EU too, but all the issues are endogenous, and a confrontational approach to avoid to admit the big mistakes that let to unsustainable debt is plainly stupid.

          3) Ukraine

          EU never "ran away". Should have EU declared war on Russia? Sure, some states with lucrative exports to Russia, and some Putin worshipers, don't like sanctions.

          You can read more here: https://eeas.europa.eu/headquarters/headquarters-homepage/4081/eu-ukraine-relations-factsheet_en

          4) Trump

          He's the only one looking utterly foolish. And the one with the wrong interests in Ukraine... it's only the Congress restraining him by kissing Putin on the lips and sleeping with him.

          5) Eurozone recovery

          Actually only counties with substantial endemic issues didn't recover yet fully, despite the big help from Draghi. And they're still trying to hide the issues under the carpet, especially Italy. That's a real big risk.

          1. codejunky Silver badge

            Re: Y2K all over again

            @ LDS

            "EU got too big too fast, that could be true. No one could envision USSR would have crumbled so quickly,"

            the autopsy of the USSR should have informed generations to come but yet some still desire such setups even when proven to fail. In fact economics is pretty good at dissecting history for things that worked and didnt, yet another example of an EU self inflicted crisis with the Euro and their reaction to the financial crisis (in both cases doing the opposite of what works).

            "And a fully US born financial crisis"

            Which the Eurozone is years behind the recovery (see above as to why). What is concerning is we (UK and US even) are not in a great position to deal with the next recession. The Eurozone is in a dire situation for dealing with the next recession. When China was touted a global financial risk, the Eurozone was potentially worse.

            "EU was caught in the middle of ill-advised and worse managed acts by US."

            Wow cop out. No not in a million years does that work. The migration crisis (not asylum because Germany/EU have merged them with migrants) was Merkel offering the middle east to move into Germany, then passing the buck. Complain about the wars, thats fine, but the migration crisis was an EU self inflicted crisis.

            "Actually, without EU and the Euro they would probably look like Venezuela today."

            Greece and Italy? Yeah right bull. Why could these countries access debt so easily? The Euro. Why cant they default or dig out of it? The Euro. Why cant Greece get from under its debts? The Euro. Who BOUGHT the private debt of Greece? The ECB and made it public debt to the Eurozone. The eurozone is a self inflicted crisis which inflicted the damage, it is most certainly not a help and even helped create the problem.

            "EU never "ran away". Should have EU declared war on Russia?"

            That depends. If they participate in getting the ruler forced out to promote a pro-west government only to find Russia takes steps it is the EU who put its tail between its legs, ran away and left the problem to the US.

            "Actually only counties with substantial endemic issues didn't recover yet fully, despite the big help from Draghi."

            I love how the concept of a union is forgotten when it comes to assigning blame and leaving them behind. And that would be Draghi who kept promising he would do something for as long as he could before actually doing anything, and of course the Eurozone is years behind recovery. Not looking like a victory or even acceptable from here.

            There is a lot of redirecting the blame for the EU's failures but it doesnt work. And if they cannot admit their screw ups (nor their supporters) then why would we believe they will fix any of it or make things better?

            1. LDS Silver badge

              Re: Y2K all over again

              1) the autopsy of the USSR should have informed generations to come

              Joining the EU is wholly voluntary. Nobody was conquered or forced.

              2) Which the Eurozone is years behind the recovery

              Germany looks very fine, and drives Trump mad because of its export and surplus. Other countries as well, Only a few are still behind, for long standing internal problems mostly.

              3) Why could these countries access debt so easily? The Euro.

              You don't know their history. Their huge debts predates the Euro. They both didn't meet the GDP/debt ratio to join the Euro. They should have been left out, but for historical reasons allowed in.

              Without the Euro, they would have defaulted years ago. Both promised, and had a big opportunity to put debt under control in the early Euro days, before the crisis. They didn't, because they thought they could again get away with it. Greece even faked the data. Greek debt can't be transferred to other states, even if the ECB is involved. There are no "Euro bonds" or the like.

              Do you believe that defaulting is a good outcome? What Greece suffered is nothing compared to a default, with salary and pensions purchasing power destroyed, savings wiped away and imported goods becoming very expensive. Plus unemployment and inflation. Great, why don't we default more often?

              4) "was Merkel offering the middle east to move into Germany, "

              And why they were moving? Maybe because US started a war they couldn't manage, and from which they backed away "red line" after "red line"? Who created the conditions for ISIS to flourish? EU??? Or wars US started and still doesn't t know how to finish?

              Merkel made a mistake asserting Germany would have welcomed them, sure, but it wasn't the biggest one in Middle East. People escaping the war were moving anyway.

              5) Ukraine

              It looks it's Ukrainians to ask for a pro-EU government - those who tried Russian rule are not eager to fall under its boot again. That's why many of those countries wanted to join EU and NATO quickly - to keep Russia away.

              6) "how the concept of a union is forgotten when it comes to assigning blame"

              I've been living in Italy for many years, and I know very well its situation. It's utterly stupid to blame the EU for issues that predates both the Euro and the EU, and sometimes even the EC. Draghi saved Italy against German interests - Germany complained a lot about very low rates and QE. But ultimately, in a Union, they had to accept it.

              Draghi *did* a lot, but he's just the President of the European Central Bank, he has no power over a state policies, investment and spending.

              Italy has billions of EU funds unspent - because EU want to see projects first and check how they are spent. Because of big inefficiencies, and because stealing them is more difficult under the light, they were never spent and could be revoked. Who's to blame?

              1. codejunky Silver badge

                Re: Y2K all over again

                @ LDS

                "Joining the EU is wholly voluntary. Nobody was conquered or forced."

                I dont recall claiming that. You brought up the USSR.

                "Germany looks very fine"

                Germany != Eurozone. Germany is in the Eurozone but most important Germany != Eurozone.

                "You don't know their history. Their huge debts predates the Euro."

                So hang on. You are going to claim the EU was so impressively incompetent as to allow historically fiscally incompetent countries to join its fragile currency? You claim of historical reasons doesnt fix the incompetence to allow them if they are so bad.

                "Without the Euro, they would have defaulted years ago"

                And had Greece done that it is highly likely its crisis would be resolved by now and the country be fine. The Euro removed that possibility as they couldnt default, devalue nor do a damn thing to pay off those rich EU member private banks who lent them money and should have been defaulted on.

                "Great, why don't we default more often?"

                As countries have done throughout history on a simple fact that you cannot pay back what you cannot pay back. A simple concept the Euro does not allow Greece who would likely have been back to normal by now. Except for the Euro buggering it.

                "And why they were moving?"

                I answered that in the bit you quoted! Merkel offered! Instead of going to safe camps near their home country to return and rebuild once the war was over they and every other migrant tried to move to Germany. Thats why!

                "Merkel made a mistake asserting Germany would have welcomed them"

                Of your entire section 4 that is the only part of your comment which seems to be correct. But by stating that you seem to have worked out why the EU has a migration crisis.

                "It looks it's Ukrainians to ask for a pro-EU government"

                The EU made a push for closer ties to Ukraine and abandoned them when Russia reacted. The EU did it. It is the EU's fault. The EU caused it. Look it up, the information is easily available.

                "Who's to blame?"

                For tying economies to a place with apparently glaring huge problems before Italy joined? That would be EU. Yes the Germans do things differently to the Italians, so if its such a hurdle why unionize? The blame is easy to assign, its the EU. If the EU cant cope with such bad actors then why not kick Italy out? Instead they fear Italy will leave.

                1. LDS Silver badge

                  Re: Y2K all over again

                  1) I dont recall claiming that. You brought up the USSR.

                  I just stated that quick crumble of USSR meant many Eastern Europe counties hastened to join EU - freely, and it added more issues to EU integration, as they were just out from tens of years of communist bad administrations, and their economies had, and have, several issues. The US-born 2008 crisis a few years after just added more issues.

                  Some of them are still waiting to join - again, because they want so. EU and USSR are not comparable at all - you implied that similitude. Actually, it's Russia to fear EU, an utterly stupid fear based on its imperialist attitude, still alive after several defeats. Are you a Russian troll, maybe?

                  2) Germany != Eurozone.

                  Still, Germany is in the Eurozone. And it's not the only country doing well. Other still have issues, true. Just, not all of those issues are because of the Eurozone. The new US commercial wars and other geopolitical issues are not helping, evidently. But who's slowing down also? UK.

                  Meanwhile, there are chances the US recovery may have created another bubble that could explode one day or the other. And US recovery anyway didn't help nor the middle class nor the lower ones, as wages stagnated and their debt increased. Sure, Apple big shareholders are fine...

                  3) allow historically fiscally incompetent countries to join its fragile currency

                  Unluckily, yes. That's when politics trumps economy. Italy was a founder of EU, and Greece is the land where democracy was born. The Euro is far from being fragile, it stood the crisis, but it is true that the promised Italy and Greece made to join the Euro were not fulfilled. They remain an issue in the Eurozone, nobody denies that. And the worst thing is Italian politicians are acting against the country own interest, not only EU one, just to buy easy consensus, as happened in Greece.

                  4) had Greece done that it is highly likely its crisis would be resolved by now and the country be fine.

                  ROTFL! Defaults are a bet, and usually people lose. Look at Argentina, it never really recovered. When you have systemic issues, defaults don't solve anything. They just destroy value, and make people much poorer. Especially for a country with a poor economy like Greece. Italy has a North that is very strong, but its South is a big problem since 1861. A default would destroy the North economy, and won't solve the South issues. Sure, you can say "I can't pay back". And who lends you money after that? Lehman "defaulted" in 2008, and it started the worst crisis since 1929. Think what if a country like Italy defaults, and doesn't repay 2,399,764,655,200 euros (debt today). How many financial institutions and companies may go bankrupt as well? Can you see the consequences? Italy is one of the top 10 economies in the world, do you believe it would have not systemic effects? How many tax-payers funded bail-outs would become necessary?

                  5) instead of going to safe camps near their home country to return

                  Which camps? In Lebanon, Turkey or Iraq? Many are there (those in Turkey paid by EU). Do you believe refugee camps are safe holiday resorts? Return to be killed as rebels or imprisoned because Assad doesn't like them? Rebuild with which money, after you lost everything? I don't believe Putin has much to spare for a "Marshall Plan", but for some Assad closed allies, maybe. And again, who destabilized Syria? Merkel or US?

                  6) have worked out why the EU has a migration crisis.

                  The migration crisis started well before Syria collapsed and Merkel words, even before Merkel became Chancellor. Immigration from Africa, for example, it's a long standing issue. But it's not the only source.

                  I wonder where you live, because it looks you have a very small knowledge of the European situation.

                  7) abandoned them when Russia reacted.

                  EU didn't abandon anything - still, the situation in Ukraine is very complex and delicate, especially when an authoritarian country like Russia is involved. Russia reacted because of fear. Putin power if wholly built on nationalism and imperialism, and he's stupidly crippling Russia economy to hold power. A thriving Ukraine would be the worst blow to him (Ukrainian have their faults as well, sure). Fear makes Russia dangerous - so the approach is obviously cautious.

                  Where information are easily available, from your Russian sources?

                  8) "before Italy joined".

                  Again, it looks you know nothing about European history. Italy is a founder member of what would become EU. Italy didn't "joined", it, with others, created it. The founding act of EU is the Treaty of Rome. Do you know where Rome is? Look it up, the information is easily available.

                  The idea was exactly to create a Union despite the differences. Yet is true not everything went as planned, and some corrections are obviously necessary. Still, Italy size and EU history don't make "kicking it out" nor simple nor desirable, even if some in Mitteleuropa would like it. Nor EU is made around the idea of "kicking countries out" if issues arises. One of the founders leaving would be a big blow to the EU project, much more than UK whiners leaving, after they joined reluctantly.

                  I know there are people who would like it... especially among those who fear EU and see it as a big competitor, so would like to see it crumble.

                  1. codejunky Silver badge

                    Re: Y2K all over again

                    @ LDS

                    "EU and USSR are not comparable at all - you implied that similitude."

                    I am getting the feeling we misunderstood each other. When you said "No one could envision USSR would have crumbled so quickly" I was saying that economics is fairly good at the post-mortem and that the EU's decisions to do the opposite of what economics teaches from hundreds of years of experience caused its problems. Sorry if that was unclear.

                    "Still, Germany is in the Eurozone"

                    That actually is my point correcting your previous comment. Germany and France used to be the twin engine of the EU until France went too far socialist for a short while. So while Germany might be doing well (which is due to an undervalued currency for Germany) it does not mean the Eurozone is doing well, in fact it is part of the problem.

                    "Just, not all of those issues are because of the Eurozone"

                    I never said all issues are due to the Eurozone, I only blame it for the plague that it is.

                    "But who's slowing down also? UK."

                    Yes. Because we recovered from the recession and are returning to normal. The Eurozone sped up, but not because they are doing well but because they put so many out of work and inflicted such damage.

                    "Unluckily, yes. That's when politics trumps economy."

                    Ok, if that is how you view the EU/Eurozone we can use that assumption (I dont know if it is right or wrong, only that the outcome is wrong). So the UK is better off getting out of a place that puts politics before the economy as politics is for politicians and the economy is for the people.

                    "They just destroy value, and make people much poorer."

                    I am not seeing much improvement for Greece being in the Euro, and they do constantly get whipped by the EU dictating how Greece should run its economy. Which in my view is certainly worse.

                    "Sure, you can say "I can't pay back". And who lends you money after that?"

                    And yet they do. it isnt about saying 'I cant pay it back' its about the actual factual physical impossibility. That hasnt changed with Greece, the debt which would be written off with a default and Greece would continue has been replaced with Greece having debt for an infinite period at below growth interest rates to write off the debt over 'forever' and Greece belongs to the EU who now own it. EU politicians now can direct Greece in any way they want. All because rich member private banks could not be allowed to fail, at the expense of Greece.

                    "Italy is one of the top 10 economies in the world, do you believe it would have not systemic effects?"

                    In your scenario the problem must be covered up which allows it to get bigger and be even worse. I disagree with the analysis but I wouldnt promote making the problem worse.

                    '5)'

                    That entire section doesnt seem to offer anything. Causing a migration crisis in the EU because there is a war on somewhere doesnt sound like a fix, only another problem. Are you in favour of whole families being uprooted and causing a migration crisis because there is a war on? The camps make it easier for them to return home and fix the place after the war. Isnt that a good thing?

                    "Immigration from Africa, for example, it's a long standing issue"

                    Yes. And then a migration crisis started because of Germany which caused a lot of political strain between the members. Germany turned a problem into a crisis (accidentally I expect) and made it the EU's problem.

                    "Russia reacted because of fear. Putin power if wholly built on nationalism and imperialism, and he's stupidly crippling Russia economy to hold power."

                    Ok. And they reacted because the EU was pressing for closer ties with Ukraine, encouraging them to oust their Russian friendly leader and when Russia reacted the EU ran away and left it to the US and things got globally tense very quickly.

                    "Where information are easily available, from your Russian sources?"

                    I am sure one of your school classes will at some point show you google. If you fancy give it a try and enter what you are searching for in the text box that appears on the google website and see if you can find information.

                    "Italy is a founder member of what would become EU."

                    Congrats. Is the EU the Eurozone, I think the Euro is the official currency of the EU as it is stipulated as a requirement in joining but some remainers like to disagree. This is where I do note the UK doesnt have the Euro (yey opt-out) but if Italy was so economically duff then they should not have been allowed to join the Euro should they? Again if politics overrules the economy then the people are shafted, and that isnt something I want (so I vote leave).

                    1. Anonymous Coward
                      Anonymous Coward

                      Re: if politics overrules the economy then the people are shafted

                      "what economics teaches from hundreds of years of experience "

                      Which is what, exactly? Remember: Goldman Sachs, not economists, not politicians, decided whether or not Greece got to meet the EuroZone criteria (and Goldmans people influenced a few other actions too). I don't think that kind of thing was ever in the "legacy" economics classes (even though Adam Smith knew that unregulated big business was on the whole a bit bent), but it's one of many things that happen in the real world that "economics" tries to ignore, very much to the cost of the real people in the real world.

                      References: use google, that's what you said, right?

                      "if politics overrules the economy then the people are shafted"

                      So long as casino banksters and their political puppets hijack the democratic process, the people are indeed shafted.

                      The people need to take back control!

                      Hmmm, now how do we do that? How do we vote against Goldman Sachs and friends, given the following:

                      https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/how-goldman-sachs-took-over-the-world-873869.html (2008)

                      https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/what-price-the-new-democracy-goldman-sachs-conquers-europe-6264091.html (2011)

                      https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/goldman-sachs-the-secret-tapes-9763769.html (2014)

                      https://www.thenation.com/article/goldmans-greek-gambit/ (2015) [extract below]

                      Even BBC Radio 4's usually-reliable "More or Less" series spotted what really happened:

                      http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/radio4/entries/fba91847-2c24-394f-a088-99fbb6973b51

                      (extract below):

                      Share and enjoy. Other banksters are available. The value of your democracy in the 21st century may go down as well as down.

                      .....................................

                      From BBC Radio 4's More or Less series:

                      http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/radio4/entries/fba91847-2c24-394f-a088-99fbb6973b51

                      "To get inside the walls of the Eurozone, the Greeks needed to convince the European Union that they had met various irksome rules about inflation, government deficit, and government debt.

                      Instead of calling Odysseus, the modern Greeks called Goldman Sachs and asked them to structure a clever financial deal that put a lot of Greek borrowing off the books. And it wasn't just Goldman Sachs - it's been reported that there were all kinds of ways in which the Greek government of 11 years ago managed to make their macroeconomic statistics look trim and healthy.

                      [continues]"

                      From https://www.thenation.com/article/goldmans-greek-gambit/

                      "The Greek debt crisis offers another illustration of Wall Street’s powers of persuasion and predation, although the Street is missing from most accounts.

                      The crisis was exacerbated years ago by a deal with Goldman Sachs, engineered by Goldman’s current CEO, Lloyd Blankfein. Blankfein and his Goldman team helped Greece hide the true extent of its debt, and in the process almost doubled it. And just as with the American subprime crisis, and the current plight of many American cities, Wall Street’s predatory lending played an important although little-recognized role.

                      In 2001, Greece was looking for ways to disguise its mounting financial troubles. The Maastricht Treaty required all eurozone member states to show improvement in their public finances, but Greece was heading in the wrong direction. Then Goldman Sachs came to the rescue, arranging a secret loan of 2.8 billion euros for Greece, disguised as an off-the-books “cross-currency swap”—a complicated transaction in which Greece’s foreign-currency debt was converted into a domestic-currency obligation using a fictitious market exchange rate.

                      As a result, about 2 percent of Greece’s debt magically disappeared from its national accounts. Christoforos Sardelis, then head of Greece’s Public Debt Management Agency, later described the deal to Bloomberg Business as “a very sexy story between two sinners.” For its services, Goldman received a whopping 600 million euros ($793 million), according to Spyros Papanicolaou, who took over from Sardelis in 2005. That came to about 12 percent of Goldman’s revenue from its giant trading and principal-investments unit in 2001—which posted record sales that year. The unit was run by Blankfein.

                      [continues]"

                      Marvellous.

                      1. codejunky Silver badge

                        Re: if politics overrules the economy then the people are shafted

                        @AC

                        Your rather long post seems to be on the singular subject of Goldman Sachs if I am right and didnt miss anything? Isnt Goldman Sachs private, and so the EU should have the ability to lodge some form of legal complaint if GS broke the law. Even if GS didnt break the law if the EU feels they abused or cheated the EU then they can stop sending GS business and not accept their recommendations in future. I am not going to try and defend GS.

                        Me and LDS are discussing the hypothetical possibility that the EU knew how duff the Greek and Italian economic management system was but let them in anyway (and we seem to be focussing on Greece). You offer the hypothetical possibility that the EU had no idea. I can believe either could have been the reality so will discuss from either.

                        The outcome after all of that is Greece went under from the recession and it owed and thanks to the EU still owes money that is cannot possibly repay because it doesnt exist. That money is lost, the question is who takes that loss. It was private debt that could be defaulted on but the rich members banks would have taken the hit for lending out the money. So instead of the private sector taking the loss the ECB bought the debt and made it the EU tax payers problem*. So tax payers in the EU have been forced to bail out the banks, not Greece.

                        This works well for the EU because the richer members dont have to deal with any of their private banks that might be exposed to the losses, and the EU has 'bought' a member country. Greece will do what they are told because they are in perpetual debt to the ECB who wont write off the losses and just holds onto it. The money wont be repaid but its a good leash to control a member.

                        *Cameron was proud of his signed agreement the EU would not use our contribution to bail out Greece (i.e. the GBP was not to be used to bail out the EUR). Unfortunately the EU then did it anyway.

                    2. LDS Silver badge

                      Re: Y2K all over again

                      1) I was saying that economics is fairly good at the post-mortem

                      You wrote "the autopsy of the USSR should have informed generations to come but yet some still desire such setups ". It looks to me comparing EU to USSR

                      Anyway I never stated anything about the reasons of the collapse. Just that it happened at a speed nobody believed possible. The freed countries flocked to EU. That made EU more imbalanced, and stressed more its organization. It was another instance where politics and economics were at odds. EU could have stayed a richer Western club and say to Eastern countries "go to Hell (aka Russia)", or bring them in, with some benefits (a low cost area...) but the associated risks of integrating struggling economies, and large poorer populations - not surprisingly ready to vote for populist leaders later.

                      Anyway political unification always went together with economic unification. It could work, like in US (until Trump, maybe) or utterly fail like in USSR. Its failure was eminently economical, but how long a bad government is able to stand is hard to tell. Simple economic unification may not last too.

                      Economics is a fairly recent "science", and nothing from hundred of years ago is comparable to the challenges of today. Anyway it would have told that the behaviours - like subprime loans and derivatives - that lead to the 2008 crisis in US were far more dangerous than the Euro - which aims are not just making a few people richer.

                      You of course don't live in the Eurozone, or you would have appreciated the simplification it brought, and what a stable currency means for business. Sure, some don't like a currency that can compete with the dollar, or a strong economic area at its boundaries, while its economy is just built on raw materials extraction...

                      2) are returning to normal.

                      No, UK is growing less than the Eurozone but Italy, look at the data. And Brexit didn't happened yet.

                      Others get out of the recession faster and with higher growth. France problems are old ones, especially since it has been "socialist" for very long time, not a short one. Did yo already forgot Mitterand? He's been president for 14 years. Even under right-wing presidents, the Parliament could have had a Socialist majority, i.e. under Chirac (it happened to Mitterand as well, with roles inverted). Macron (who belonged to the socialist party as well) is attempting to break old privileges, but it's a two-edged sword. Again, you show a very limited knowledge of European history. I wonder where you are from.

                      Anyway, even in countries that overall post data not good enough, there are internal big differences - some industries (especially exporting ones) rebounded well and are at per-crises level or beyond, other are still struggling, because internal demand is still low, because of the uncertainty. But stimulating it is up to the single states, not EU. Draghi did what it could.

                      I.e.. increasing VAT, or levy a tax on houses to pay for a huge debt interests, is not exactly a way to stimulate it - but after three "spending reviews" in Italy, for example, nothing has been done to avoid to touch cronyistic interests - again, a fully EU and Euro fault...

                      3) politics is for politicians and the economy is for the people.

                      Quite stupid assertion. Politics, good one, is the art of governing for the people, its root is the "polis". Economy without good government is not for the people, as it soon will concentrate wealth in a few hands if left alone. Which basically is what happened in US and EU (including UK), or just look at Russia and its oligarchs.. fully sustained by bad politics who gets part of the money.

                      4) not seeing much improvement for Greece being in the Euro

                      Compared to what? Do you know what Greece would be if left on its own? Maybe give a look to Venezuela... there was no magic wand to get Greece fully out of the swamp it put itself into, and transform it into a little Germany. Greek have to understand a lot is up to them. They lived beyond their means, and the awakening can be painful. Now they have an option to learn from the past, start build a better future and avoid another crisis, or keep old habits, and face a new one.

                      After all, it's not like in Syria, where you believe it's even easier...

                      5) In your scenario the problem must be covered up

                      Where I ever said that? Italy has to resolve its long standing problems, for its citizens first (who are burdened by an elevate fiscal pressure and low quality services), and Europe second. It's Italian governments which are trying to pretend there's no problem while blaming EU for self-inflicted issues. Thinking that the debt can magically disappear without ugly consequences it's exactly covering up the problem.

                      6) "they reacted because the EU was pressing for closer ties with Ukraine"

                      You look more and more like a Russian troll. It was Ukraine to press for closer ties to EU - like all those other countries who endured Russian domination and would like to do without. Keep on telling yourself "EU ran away", maybe one day you will believe it too. It's only Trump and its cronies trying to kill NATO and run away from allies, while appreciating dictators. Still, Russia is in a stalemate in Ukraine, and just worsened its international position. It violated international law, and downed a civil aircraft killing hundreds of people.

                      And keep on believing that it was EU to create a migration crisis, and not being just a dream for those who leave or escape. Why US is an immigration target as well? Because of EU and Merkel? Or because people try to move where they can live better than a refugees camp for years?

                      7) I am sure one of your school classes will at some point

                      Sorry, I didn't take trolling courses like you. You've shown over and over very little knowledge of European history, and EU itself. And your approach to Ukrainian evens is very slanted towards Russian thinking.

                      8) Congrats. Is the EU the Eurozone

                      What I wrote stands both for EU and the Eurozone.

                      Leaving the Euro is not possible - there is no provision in the treaties to do so. You would probably need to leave EU also, until changes are made to allow it.

                      I was the first to point out that Italy didn't have the full requirements to join the Euro, something you didn't know evidently. still there were enough margins to fix the issues in 2002, if a billionaire prime minister wasn't busier in changing laws to avoid trials and convictions, and favour its TV stations, while having extramarital affairs with an harem of paid women.

                      But once joined the process is not reversible, so a solution must be found within EU and the Eurozone. Especially since Italy is also a big net contributor to EU funds...

                      One of the biggest issue is the debt issued in Euro - it would be impossible to repay it with a currency that quickly depreciates, and that would put a big pressure on the Euro. Maybe sustainable for a small economy like Greece, probably not for a far larger one like Italy. Maybe one day Italy will be kicked off because no longer sustainable, but the effects are unknown, and nobody is really interested in taking a chance unless really forced.

                      Anyway, even voting Leave is a victory of politics (probably a bad one) over economy. Otherwise why UK would be begging to be still in the custom union, and have the EU market still open? You (if you're British, something I doubt now) will see the result... and I'll wait for the post-mortem.

                      1. codejunky Silver badge

                        Re: Y2K all over again

                        @ LDS

                        "It was another instance where politics and economics were at odds."

                        Ok so we are seeming to agree on a key EU problem, that they make terrible decisions for no good reason.

                        "Its failure was eminently economical, but how long a bad government is able to stand is hard to tell. Simple economic unification may not last too."

                        This is where economic history kicks in. The best chance of survival is by doing things that work, and doing things known to be very damaging is reckless and dangerous. That again is where the EU is choosing reckless and dangerous. Sharing a currency over such a large area doesnt work without transfers, which the EU doesnt really have. Probably due to rich members not wanting to pay for poor members (aka Germany doesnt want to pay for Greek pensions). The approach taken with Greece is the opposite of economic knowledge, again doing the worst thing. Your suggestion that the EU is willingly taking on members that poorly fit into the EU and increase risk again backs this up. When something looks about to blow up it makes sense that people would move away from it- UK voted brexit and member countries are voting parties offering to oppose the EU/Eurozone.

                        "Economics is a fairly recent "science", and nothing from hundred of years ago is comparable to the challenges of today."

                        Really? Cuba offered to pay off some of its debt in rum (if I remember correctly) which is barter, a method way back before currency. Currencies being more than a hundred or hundreds of years ago (quick google search the GBP is the oldest currency still in use at 1200 years old). Comparisons of empires that rise and fall, trade and currency still apply today.

                        "Anyway it would have told that the behaviours - like subprime loans and derivatives - that lead to the 2008 crisis in US were far more dangerous"

                        Why? Because new problem untested in the world had a result that was unexpected? On that note the rating system did work as the reliable loans were fine, it was the lower graded ones that fell due to a fall in house prices across the whole US which had never happened before (I think I got that right?). Thought to be safer as it sliced the debt across packaged securities the theoretically safe hit an unexpected problem when tested for the first time due to an unforeseeable situation. The Euro is just failing for obvious known reasons.

                        "You of course don't live in the Eurozone, or you would have appreciated the simplification it brought, and what a stable currency means for business. Sure, some don't like a currency that can compete with the dollar"

                        Sorry but that is total nonsense and extremely worrying that someone believes it. The EU- still behind the recovery, poor economic situation, trashed member countries. The US- bounced out of recession, booming. If you think the EU is better then you are in a rich member country with blinkers on. There is no competition, the US won hands down.

                        "No, UK is growing less than the Eurozone but Italy, look at the data. And Brexit didn't happened yet."

                        That is good news. When an advanced economy is growing it is held around 2-3% (trump aiming for more. Dunno how that will pan out). When a knackered advanced economy which suffers heavily with high unemployment and almost hits the rocks then starts to recover, growth should be huge as those people get re-employed and business kicks up again. Saying the EU is growing faster than the UK while economically in our current situations you are actually saying the UK is doing better.

                        "But stimulating it is up to the single states, not EU. Draghi did what it could."

                        That is wrong. It is up to the ECB as it holds the purse strings. That is why it is pushing QE still, because fiscal controls are removed from the struggling countries leaving only monetary. And its a single currency which of course averages out over the area (e.g. undervalued for Germany, overvalued for Greece). Germany is sucking up the money so it could throw some of it at the other countries, but that wouldnt be popular for the already struggling Merkel.

                        "Politics, good one, is the art of governing for the people"

                        Good luck selling that here but yes it is supposed to be. Now lets look at N.Korea, USSR, Nazi Germany, Communist China, and so on. Good government is supposed to be there to govern for the people. Does that ring true with data slurping and some of the disturbing anti terror approaches against their own citizens?

                        "Economy without good government is not for the people"

                        Kinda true. The economy is the transactions in peoples lives and good regulation helps with that. This is where there was acceptable debate as to how good the EU government is.

                        "4)"

                        Totally wrong. Enjoy- https://www.investopedia.com/financial-edge/0911/the-history-of-greek-sovereign-debt-defaults.aspx

                        "Where I ever said that?"

                        In your comment- "A default would destroy the North economy" "How many financial institutions and companies may go bankrupt as well?" "How many tax-payers funded bail-outs would become necessary?". What you dont seem to realise is that this is the Greek situation and the EU tax payer has bailed out the rich members banks and that private debt is now an EU tax payer loss. When you suggest they cant be allowed to default (aka they cannot pay back because they do not have the money to pay back full stop) it is hiding the problem until it crashes worse later.

                        "Thinking that the debt can magically disappear without ugly consequences it's exactly covering up the problem."

                        Exactly I agree. The EU made them feel that they can magically take on debt with no consequences. The consequences typically being default and having to fix the problems. That is why countries try not to default!

                        "You look more and more like a Russian troll."

                        Of course I do. You seem wedded to your 'interesting' perspectives and I am not shocked that when confronted with a different perspective you see me as heretic, witch, eurosceptic, russian troll. Instead of trying to justify your lack of valid answers by trying to discredit who I am in your mind, maybe try getting some answers.

                        "And keep on believing that it was EU to create a migration crisis"

                        Actually it was Germany who turned it into a crisis (Merkel) and passed the buck to the EU. It was very well covered by the news. In the UK at least.

                        "You've shown over and over very little knowledge of European history, and EU itself"

                        Throughout your comment you keep suggesting this, while demonstrating an amazing lack of knowledge. Is this another defence mechanism like the russian troll thing to make yourself feel better? I am happy to discuss facts and opinions but if you find that threatening to your strongly held beliefs feel free to just end the discussion.

                        "Leaving the Euro is not possible - there is no provision in the treaties to do so. You would probably need to leave EU also, until changes are made to allow it."

                        There is no provision, until provision is needed. The EU has found itself very flexible when it needs to be.

                        "I was the first to point out that Italy didn't have the full requirements to join the Euro"

                        Well done (that is sincere). But again the self inflicted problems of the EU are part of why I voted out.

                        "Anyway, even voting Leave is a victory of politics (probably a bad one) over economy."

                        There are plenty good reasons to vote out from politics to economic and trade. Read my post history I stumped a few remainers insisting it must be racism to vote leave.

                        "Otherwise why UK would be begging to be still in the custom union, and have the EU market still open?"

                        Why would a remainer PM in a public system desperate to remain and refusing to let brexiters coordinate brexit want to remain? I will let you figure that one out. If you cant then look at my very first post on this article.

              2. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: Y2K all over again

                LDS, Don't bother wasting your time. codjunky doesn't understand facts and in his last post showed his true colours - it's all those immigrants.

                Theres no debating someone like that.

        2. Cynic_999 Silver badge

          Re: Y2K all over again

          @codejunky

          "... to the EU or its dreadful currency."

          Dreadful? How? Had you switched to using Euro in 1973, it would have been a wise move, because it is worth twice as much now compared to the pound. So either it's not as dreadful as you think, or the pound is even more dreadful (probably the latter).

          1. codejunky Silver badge

            Re: Y2K all over again

            @ Cynic_999

            "So either it's not as dreadful as you think, or the pound is even more dreadful (probably the latter)."

            That shows the large mistake in measurement. When people defend the Euro they defend its numerical value. But the purpose of a currency is to support the economy as a method of trade (superior to barter). The Euro problem is easy demonstrated by the US, UK and Euro where the UK is mid way (similar culture to the US but participating in the EU)-

            >The US hit its recession and bounced out.

            >The UK hit its recession and bounced out.

            >The Eurozone hit its recession and waited so long it became a panic to avoid deflation.

            Or as employment figures work the EZ is still badly behind the recovery. In QE terms the EZ is behind. In inflation terms the EZ is ramping up its growth, not because it is doing so well but because it was so dire that people being re-employed after the damage inflicted by the Euro and is playing catch-up.

            So no the pound is a freaking marvel in comparison to the Euro and I wont claim the pound is doing great but unlike the Euro it has supported its economy aka population.

          2. John Smith 19 Gold badge
            Headmaster

            Dreadful? How? Had you switched to using Euro in 1973, it would have been a wise move,

            I don't think the Euro existed in 1973.

            Do you mean 1993?

    3. This post has been deleted by its author

    4. Pen-y-gors Silver badge

      Re: Y2K all over again

      nothing too serious will happen

      True. People won't be able to fly, and the queues at Dover will start to grow.

      After a few days in the queue things start to get nasty, as mobs of lorry drivers roam the Kent countryside looking for food and water.

      After a couple of weeks the rotting food in the lorries has attracted rats, which breed rapidly. Bubonic plague sweeps southern England.

      And after a month or two the insulin supply dries up. Theresa May is okay, as she gets private supplies imported by sea from the USA.

      The last makes me wonder: would an insulin-dependent diabetic be likely to get off by claiming 'self defence' if the started slaughtering pro-Brexit MPs before the final vote?

    5. Geekpride
      Coat

      Re: Y2K all over again

      "Immediate disaster" rather depends on whether there is a deal and what areas it covers. If there is a no-deal, there will be an immediate halt to the importation of medical isotopes. That might not be a disaster for you, but it would be disaster for those who need them.

  11. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
    Coat

    time for a chorus of

    "Let's call the whole thing off" perhaps?

    Coat with a soon to be useless passport in the pocket.

    1. werdsmith Silver badge

      Re: time for a chorus of

      I'm getting more confident that people are slowly coming to their senses.

      You can see in the words of brexiters that a lot are realising what a mess they've made and are trying to bluster over their embarrassment.

      1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
        Unhappy

        "I'm getting more confident that people are slowly coming to their senses."f

        Nice idea.

        Don't think it's going to happen.

        Basically there is no way for the Brexiteers to declare victory without letting htis call clusterf**k play out.

  12. Mark 85 Silver badge

    there will be only time for “temporary sticking plasters”.

    Which will become permanent due to "cost impact on profits".

  13. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Britain could become the 51st state.

      Many people would suggest that's already happened. It was very very close just before TTIP fell apart.

      1. codejunky Silver badge

        Re: Britain could become the 51st state.

        Being the 51st state would probably suit remainers. We would be part of a large union (although it has a better track record and proven stability particularly compared with the EU), their president is increasingly protectionist and our gov could be overruled by the lawmaking infrastructure of the US.

        It might even sit better with those who want the EU like union but without the multiple self inflicted crises. And we have a lot more in common with the US.

        1. LDS Silver badge

          Re: Britain could become the 51st state.

          Just you would need to get rid of your monarchy - I don't believe it fits well with US Constitution. While I believe it would be a good choice (getting rid of a monarchy), I don't believe it would be accepted by most Britons, it would also imply to get rid of lords, etc. so it will shake the foundation of the British society and its caste system - are you ready for it?

          Also being part of US too implies "freedom of movement" across the states, as in a big Schengen Area... while you would have to say goodbye to NHS, probably, as federal taxes would go to Washington, not London. And you'll get anyway the Dollar, no Pound anymore.

          I would suggest you to join Canada, it could be better....

          EU is much younger than US, and it didn't enter yet a bloody Civil War as the "stable" US did. US crisis tend to be much huge and dangerous.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Britain could become the 51st state.

          "It might even sit better with those who want the EU like union but without the multiple self inflicted crises."

          Somehow I get the feeling you don't follow US news / politics / history.

          'Self inflicted crises' R Them.

          1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
            Unhappy

            'Self inflicted crises' R Them.

            Indeed.

            The regular shutting down of the whole USG due to budget squabbling.

            Senate and Congress persons whose nominal party membership bears almost no relation to their voting on issues

            Parties whose supposed elected representatives are about as unified as a herd of cats.

            And remember by UK standards both parties would be right of the ERG wing of the Conservatives.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Can't wait.

    Can't wait for the end of yooman rights laws that weren't imposed on us by yoorop so we can waterboard Farage, Mogg, de Pfeffel Johnson, Banks etc. to find out where the money came from and how they were going to profit from wrecking our country.

    That and because it'd be fun.

  15. This post has been deleted by its author

  16. Noonoot

    Chaos and more chaos

    If anyone can be bothered to read all the documentation just recently published here:

    https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/how-to-prepare-if-the-uk-leaves-the-eu-with-no-deal

    you'll notice that every single page starts with:

    "A scenario in which the UK leaves the EU without agreement (a ‘no deal’ scenario) remains unlikely given the mutual interests of the UK and the EU in securing a negotiated outcome.

    Negotiations are progressing well and both we and the EU continue to work hard to seek a positive deal. "

    Going well, going wrong, going disaster???

    1. John G Imrie Silver badge

      Re: Chaos and more chaos

      Well the latest I heard was that 80% of the negotiations where done. So , as every teckie knows, we must be 20% into the time needed to complete all the negotiations.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Chaos and more chaos

        "Well the latest I heard was that 80% of the negotiations where done. So , as every teckie knows, we must be 20% into the time needed to complete all the negotiations."

        Habitual optimists believe in an 80/20 rule. Students of political and operational history believe in a 90/10 rule.

        Just sayin...

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Chaos and more chaos

          Whereas software development has the 80/80 rule where the first 80% takes 80% of the time and the last 20% also takes 80% of the time.

    2. LDS Silver badge

      "(a ‘no deal’ scenario) remains unlikely"

      Brexit too looked unlikely... until it happened.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Chaos and more chaos

      "you'll notice that every single page starts with:

      "A scenario in which the UK leaves the EU without agreement (a ‘no deal’ scenario) remains unlikely given the mutual interests of the UK and the EU in securing a negotiated outcome.

      Negotiations are progressing well and both we and the EU continue to work hard to seek a positive deal. ""

      The problem is that a positive deal doesn't mean the same thing to both parties.

      To the UK it means getting all the privileges without the obligations while appeasing various local political factions.

      To the EU it means preserving the fundamental structural basis of the EU.

      Do you really think the EU is going to be dictated to by the UK under those circumstances?

      Until the UK's government and political class have an unexpected collision with reality, nothing will be solved in a positive way.

    4. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Coat

      "Going well, going wrong, going disaster???"

      F**k knows.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Brexit: six months to go

    Countdown to aliexpress-sourced champaagn! ;)

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    re. government has a chequered past

    government has a chequered past in implementing IT Systems?! This is slanderous to the extreme! The public & gov sector has demonstrated remarkably consistent pattern in implementing IT systems with stellar support freely provided by the private sectors, such as the captains of the industry Capita, G4S, etc.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Scenario: in April next year, Joe Public wants to

    order something from Amazon (or other cross-border webmerchant, but almost everyone knows about Amazon) in the traditional way.

    If Brexit has happened, what will be different? Have I missed this picture being realistically described somewhere else, based on current understanding of Brexit? (There's lots of speculative stuff from the referendum era, but things May have changed since then. Or May be not).

    In particular:

    What will be better (and who will benefit), what will be worse (and who will pay the price)?

    Pointers welcome.

    1. LDS Silver badge

      "If Brexit has happened, what will be different?"

      Amazon could have more issue (customs, VAT, etc.) to source from European warehouses, so you may have to wait longer for your items (and they could become more expensive), if they aren't available at UK warehouses.

      Also, goods that are now sourced from UK warehouses (many Manfrotto items I ordered came from UK) could be moved to EU because the market is far larger here, it makes less sense to store them outside EU and again going through customs for delivery.

      Also, Amazon UK could no longer be used by EU customers easily, as well UK marketplace vendors - right now I sometimes ordered from there, but of course once UK is our from the common market it will become more difficult, as buying in the US is.

      That means Amazon UK, now serving a smaller market, and no longer able to take advantage of a broader logistic area to optimize goods availability, could incur in higher costs, that it will pass to customers.

      That cold be true for many other online operations, i.e. eBay and others.

      Local merchants could have some benefit from a less convenient Amazon, but once again if they sell foreign-made goods their prices could become higher, and if they were used to sell abroad too they will have the same issues.

      I will probably pay more Lee and Formatt Hitech filters, or Lastolite light modifiers - so I could buy less.

    2. Len Silver badge

      Re: Scenario: in April next year, Joe Public wants to

      Buying on Amazon can actually mean two things, you may buy from Amazon directly or you may buy from one of the many third parties that use Amazon as their trading platform. It's not always immediately obvious when buying a product on Amazon who you're buying from.

      Many of those traders are actually outside the UK in other EU countries and they just ship to your UK address from wherever they are based. If the hassle around VAT, duties, customs red tape etc. is too onerous post Brexit they could decide it's not worth the hassle to sell to UK consumers. That could mean that certain products are not available on Amazon UK any more or it could mean less competition and therefore higher prizes on Amazon UK.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Scenario: in April next year, Joe Public wants to

        If the hassle around VAT, duties, customs red tape etc. is too onerous post Brexit they could decide it's not worth the hassle to sell to UK consumers.

        See this already on many US web-retailers who only ship to US destinations, the first thing I now do when on these websites and wish to purchase is to look at the shipping options. These or the need to use a third-party accommodation address agency often wipe out any headline price advantage.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Scenario: in April next year, Joe Public wants to

      Assumption: keep it simple, ignore Amazon marketplace, ignore "sold by xyz fulfilled by Amazon", assume amazon.co.uk and England/Wales consumer contracts and all the usual reasonable assumptions. Also bear in mind that I am not a lawyer, although far too many politicians and their friends are lawyers.

      Begin at amazon.co.uk.

      Find (if you can [1]) the Conditions of Sale that apply today. Optionally, also find those that applied in the previous version (which appears to date from 2015?). Have a look at (for example) the section headed "Applicable Law".

      Like I say, I am not a lawyer, but as far as I can see, Amazon's purported contract of sale today for a UK consumer buying something sold and fulfilled by Amazon would at first appear to be between the consumer and Amazon EU SARL (who would appear to want to apply Luxembourg law).

      If Amazon's not your thing, think about any of your favourite trans-European outfits. Apple, Costa, whatever floats your boat (come to think of it, why not British Airways, or Santander, or whatever).

      [1] If you can't find it, I sympathise. Try starting from here:

      https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/help/customer/display.html?nodeId=1040616

      But beware of the leopard.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Incredibly irresponsible

    If a country is planning to commit suicide, the least they can do is ensure that they leave a note with details of their funeral arrangements, a pre-pay plan with the Co-op, and location of their will, as well as putting the rubbish out in advance and making sure the cat has plenty of food.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "making sure the cat has plenty of food"

      Is that cats name Jacob Rees-Moggie?

  21. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

    TL;DR

    We're fucked.

    1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Unhappy

      Re: TL;DR ...We're fucked.

      Unless of course you run a firm that invests in chaotic situations in the expectation of making money out of the more substantial rises and falls of various markets.

      In which case you'll be doing rather well.

      Remind me again, what is Jacob Rees Moggs day job.

      1. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

        Re: TL;DR ...We're fucked.

        Victorian slum lord?

        1. John Smith 19 Gold badge
          Thumb Up

          Victorian slum lord?

          His dream "job"*

          *And by job I mean sending out a team of large violent ruffians to do the actual rent collecting, thus insulating himself from "The lower orders."

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