Opinion

Those who brought us Brexit must be held accountable for the real economic damage it is now causing

21 Feb 2021 4 minutes Read
Picture by Robert Mandel (CC BY 4.0)

Tim Richards

Watching Brexit is rather like watching a traffic collision in very slow motion, as the United Kingdom car is run over by the European Union railway train.

This is because the UK needs their trade more than they need ours so we agreed to a trade deal that favours the European Union rather than us.

It doesn’t matter to Boris Johnson that it is having a devastating effect on a wide range of UK businesses because that is how he defined ‘Brexit’ – by setting up trade barriers of red tape so that we can call ourselves “independent” of the European Union.

Ironically many of the Brexit campaigners who now attack the Welsh Independence campaign on the grounds that we are separatists, completely ignore the fact that Brexit from the Europe Union was the ultimate separatist campaign.

It would also appear that their belief that a referendum represents the will of the people and should be respected only applies to them as many of them have gone straight on to campaign for the abolition of the Welsh Senedd which was created by two referenda which they now want to overturn.

Myth

Boris Johnson now leads a new party of his own creation, the English Nationalist Conservative Party, that “got Brexit done”.

But what will become more and more apparent over the next few months and years is that he hasn’t. Brexit will go on forever, particularly because so little of the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) between the EU and the UK is clear.

The politicians and lawyers will be arguing over it for decades to come as the reality of Brexit is that it is not an event but a process that is set to go on every day, every week, every month, and every year, because the British Conservative government has decided that the European Union is now an enemy.

The first great myth of Brexit is that it meant that “we” could take back control except that, of course, we, as in you and me, will have no say in it at all.

The second great myth of Brexit is that by leaving the European Union far from gaining control “we” have actually lost having any control at all over decisions made in Brussels.

At least when we were in the European Union we had a say. But now that we have left the European Council, the European Commission, and the European Parliament, we have no say – it’s take it or leave it.

Fantasy

Perhaps the strangest part of Brexit however is that the English Conservative government chose to leave the Single European Market and Customs Union as well as leaving the European Union. This was never a requirement in order to ‘Brexit’ and it’s the one thing that nobody ever seems to mention.

Iceland Norway, Liechtenstein and Switzerland are members of the European Free Trade Association (EFTA), who are in the Single European Market but not members of the European Union, so why the UK did not take that path is a mystery.

What is unique about the Brexit TCA deal is that it is the first-ever trade deal in modern history to make trading more difficult.

Few parts of the UK will see the economic impact of Brexit as much as Wales. Our ports are already facing a huge drop in trade with Ireland – which has understandably decided to trade directly with European Union continental ports so that they do not have to deal with huge increase in red tape involved in travelling through the UK.

Ultimately, those behind Brexit are English ultra-nationalists who are living in a fantasy world of their own that ignores the real economic damage which will become more and more apparent once the pandemic comes to its end.

Let us just hope that when we realise the nightmare reality that those who caused it will be held responsible for it.

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