Gross Incompetence: Theresa May's Three 'Remaining' Options On Brexit

Authored Raul Ilargi Meijer via The Automatic Earth blog,

Here’s the lowdown: the EU’s single market mechanism dictates freedom of movement for labor, capital, services and goods. These are not divisible; you cannot have one without the other. Still, that’s precisely what Theresa May, again, is proposing. She basically wants to keep the UK in the single market for goods, and make other arrangements for the rest. The EU will not accept that because it could have 27 other countries coming with their own versions of single market à la carte.

So why does she come with version 826 of what she already knows will not be accepted? And why did her cabinet comply? There are a few possibilities. Perhaps May has finally understood that there is no manner of leaving the EU left to her that will not lead to utter disaster. Maybe she just wants the whole thing to stop. Or maybe Boris Johnson et al, sensing failure for May, see a chance to dethrone her and take over power. Then again, maybe they all look for a way to blame the EU for their own failures.

[ZH: Obviously the resignation of 60% of her 5-person 'Brexit' team is not a positive (especially David Davis' strongly worded email), but as is always the case with Brexit discussions, the next news cycle might/will change everything again]

It’s hard to say, really. What’s obvious, through the comments of industries like Airbus and Jaguar Land Rover, is that 100,000s of jobs are at stake, along with 100s of billions of investments in Britain. Large enterprises are often branched out all through the EU, and they need to comply with EU rules; separate rules for their business with the UK would be a nightmare.

And even smaller companies, to varying degrees, face those same problems. For all you may think of the EU, it has arranged the single market strictly and successfully. There are enormous advantages for companies in that. Take those away and they will look at relocating towards the continent, where they would regain those advantages.

There appear to be three options (and May’s plan is not one of them): a hard Brexit, new elections, or no Brexit at all.

A hard Brexit would be an unmitigated disaster, because everything in Britain runs according to EU rules and regulations. Changing that to British rules is a Herculean task, and one for which the UK is not at all prepared (and they just lost 2 years). An example: thousands of new border officials will be needed, something for which preparations reportedly haven’t even started in earnest. And that’s just one obvious example. A hard Brexit would ruin the country. Not because Britain couldn’t function as a country, but because it’s so utterly unprepared to do so.

New elections wouldn’t solve the issues, they probably would even necessitate an extension of the March 29 2019 date by which the UK is set to leave the EU. But they would open the way to have another look at what’s actually at stake. Do Britons really want to lose all those jobs, and see their standard of living deteriorate accordingly? Because from what I’m reading all the time, the Tories’ austerity has already hit hard, and infrastructure – roads, schools, hospitals, NHS etc.- is being dismantled. A hard Brexit on top of that would be very painful.

No Brexit at all : that’s the most interesting option. Quite a few of the protagonists involved must realize by now how bad things are. Not just May. And that’s where the jockeying for position starts. On the one hand the sociopaths want the power, on the other they want to deflect the blame if things go awry.

A nice angle is emerging for Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who has so far insisted his party must protect the people’s Brexit voice: he can now make the case that since the Tories wasted two years, that vote has lost validity, because a ‘decent split’ is no longer possible. It would even be against national security (no joke).

A stronger case could perhaps be found in the campaign financing of the Leave campaign. It seems clear that there have been irregularities, it’s just a matter of how much. If it was too much, the entire referendum could be declared null and void.

But what do the media focus on?

Yes, the Russians, who allegedly furnished capital for the campaign. At the very time that the May government comes out with a Novichok 2.0 tale, which has even less credibility than its older sibling (which led to 324 diplomats being expelled). Britain has a Russia problem. Or, its government does. The English football team and its supporters do not.

Cut out the Russia stuff. Focus on Arron Banks and the money flows around him. It may be the way for everyone involved, except for those close to Leave.EU, to get out of this mess unscathed. The path is clear, says lawyer Jessica Simor:

Why It’s Not Too Late To Step Back From The Brexit Brink

[..] the government does not deny that reversal is legally possible. Its position accords with advice, which I am told from two good sources the prime minister has received, namely that the article 50 notification can be withdrawn by the UK at any time before 29 March 2019, resulting in the UK remaining in the EU on its current favourable terms. [..] As a lawyer, I agree with them. Article 50 provides for the notification – not of withdrawal but of an “intention” to withdraw. In law, an “intention” is not a binding commitment; it can be changed or withdrawn.

Article 50(5) is, moreover, clear that it is only after a member state has left that it has to reapply to join. Had the drafters intended that once a notification had taken place, a member state would have to request readmission (or seek the consent of the other member states to stay), then article 50(5) would have referred not just to the position following withdrawal, but also following notification. Such an interpretation is in line with the object and purpose of article 50.

I’d say this has turned into a story not of political preferences or ideology, but into one of sheer incompetence. Britain risks being thrown back into the age of Marx and Dickens. I’m all for independece and sovereignty, and I fully agree the EU is a massive threat to both, but this is not the way to go about these things. Get in, stay in, while you can.

Oh, and as for incompetence, that’s something you’ll see everywhere as economies dwindle, it’s not a British trait. They’re just among the first to face the challenges. The vast majority of politicians in the west will be exposed as grossly incompetent once the markets start to really go down. It’s easy to make the impression that you know what you’re doing in times of growth, but the litmus test is trying to deal with crisis. Most ‘leaders’ will fail.


Oldguy05 Mon, 07/09/2018 - 05:02 Permalink

I vill do zis you fvcking fvcks!

Oh....heh's May and not Merkel.....aren't they cousins or something? Like from back in the day?

Stasi, MI6. Bourbon and Jägermeister?

Teja Four Star Mon, 07/09/2018 - 05:33 Permalink

Simple reason for this - oil and black money, for those outside the EU. 

Those in the EU - most of the non-Euro high growth cases are Eastern European which started from a relatively low level and profiting from EU money and investments. Interesting exceptions are Sweden and UK. "Socialist" Sweden with 41% growth over the period even better than "capitalist" UK with 32%. The UK profited by offering an English language base within the EU, for banking and similar services. Look at Ireland what happens when that base is within the Euro zone. 93% growth. Of course the Irish are ripping off the others by offering a tax paradise.

The Swedish case, with twice the growth of the Euro zone, is highly interesting. Will need to do some reading there.

No question that the Euro wasn't helpful for Portugal, Italy and Greece. They should not have joined. 

In reply to by Four Star

brushhog Al Gophilia Mon, 07/09/2018 - 06:54 Permalink

I knew there was never going to be a brexit. It was bullshit. They figured they could ramp up the propaganda, fix the vote, and walk away with a mandate that would silence brexiters once and for all. But the turn out was enormous, much, much higher than they ever imagined and they werent able to fix enough votes to stay.

Now they are screwed. They will never brexit, that was never even an option. But, somehow, they have to deal with the british people being exposed to the reality that they do not run their own country. My guess is they will fall back on their old stand-by; continuous, nonstop, media propaganda...maybe a second brexit vote, this time fixed completely.

You brits were fucked the second you allowed yourselves to be disarmed. Now you lost your country, controlled by unelected elites in Europe, OCEANS of violent migrant thugs arriving daily and what are going to do? Suck a lemon and punch each other at soccer games while your daughters get raped by Ali Muhammed Ackbar and his gang.

In reply to by Al Gophilia

Rodders75 brushhog Mon, 07/09/2018 - 07:30 Permalink

What many forget is that without the £39bn divorce bill + ongoing contributions till full exit the EU is royally fucked. No more handouts to Poland, Romania, Bulgaria etc etc without the Germans raising their contributions which ain't gonna happen. We have a very strong bargaining position which the spineless remainer Theresa isn't exploiting. 

In reply to by brushhog

philipat Lockesmith Mon, 07/09/2018 - 06:47 Permalink

Fine Globalist Establishment take on things in this article! And the Globalists do not want to accept the will of the people and will fight this to the bitter end.

It's actually quite simple really: The British people voted to LEAVE the EU to regain sovereignty and to retake control of its own borders and laws presently decreed by psychopathic, anti-democtratic, unelected Bureaucrats in Brussels.

And at the end of the day, there are things more important than money. So if the UK economy suffers a temporary setback and jobs get lost because of a Hard Brexit, so be it. Britain has always found its way in the world and will continue to do so after Brexit.

So can we please just GET ON WITH IT.....

In reply to by Lockesmith

land_of_the_few Lockesmith Mon, 07/09/2018 - 10:20 Permalink

It's a nice thought about the oil, but according to the CIA factbook it hasn't got any -
Sweden Estimated Oil Reserves 1 Jan 2017 - 0 (same as Estonia and Finland)…
Sweden doesn't have a Northern coast, it's landlocked on the northern part like Finland - which is why Sweden shouldn't care too much about the RU Northern Fleet ;)
Maybe those oil reserves were Norway's ?
As for the financial part - yeah, seems legit :D

In reply to by Lockesmith

kellys_eye EuroPox Mon, 07/09/2018 - 05:50 Permalink

If we were able to 'enter' the EU over a period of decades we can equally 'leave' the EU over a period of decades (not that I'd want it to drag on for that long of course).

To state that a hard Brexit (cliff edge) would be damaging is patently ridiculous.  How, exactly, would the UK differ being 'in' the EU today and 'out' of the EU tomorrow?  Answer - it wouldn't matter a hoot.

We can leave at any time and change all the rules and regulations we want at a time that suits.  No-one, and I mean NO-ONE, will want to lose trade or money over this issue.  It's only the EU that proposes 'difficulties', introduces obstacles and insists there will be 'consequences'.

The only 'consequences' would be from deliberate and arrogant (not to mention blatantly apparent to every EU member country) obstacles designed to frustrate - which would only create more anti-EU sentiment in countries that already see the projekt as an abject failure.

Note how the discourse is ALWAYS about how badly off the UK will be..... NEVER about the consequences to the EU?  There's a damned good reason the media keep schtum about that reporting arrangement.  Cunts.

In reply to by EuroPox

jin187 EuroPox Mon, 07/09/2018 - 06:24 Permalink

It's not even a matter of the EU wanting to punish the Brits.  They HAVE to make the exit as painful as possible, in order to make sure no one else thinks it's a good idea.

The defining attribute of any tyrant is when they act against the interests of their own people, just to maintain their power.

In reply to by EuroPox

EuroPox jin187 Mon, 07/09/2018 - 06:30 Permalink

The EU's plan is to make it fail by being unreasonable - there was no border between N Ireland and the Republic for 50 years before either joined the EU and it was obvious there could not be one after Brexit but the EU turned it into an issue.

Last night Davis's spokesman said:  “DD couldn’t sell out his own country” - what does that say about Treasonous May... who IS selling out her own country?

In reply to by jin187

107cicero EuroPox Mon, 07/09/2018 - 07:16 Permalink

I enjoy your posts but I have mining interests in Donegal  not far from the 'border' between Northern Ireland and Ireland proper.

You can still see where the border was and the old timer in the pub say there was 'patch' of fence was still there in the mid to late  eighties, done of course, because of the gas and retailers who had property on either side for obvious mercantile reasons.

Europe will say, do anything to keep the Brits in, this Irish border issue is a tricky one but minor I agree. . 

UK just needs a leader , NOT May, who will take some severe short term pain for long term gain.  .

Unfortunately, in democracies and Republics this cannot occur, as when pain occurs they get voted out; that's why Putin, Xi have the luxury to think 'long term'


In reply to by EuroPox

EuroPox 107cicero Mon, 07/09/2018 - 07:51 Permalink

Well thanks for your comment.

I am curious about the 'patch' of fence.  In the 80s both countries were in the EU and anyone was free to buy whatever they wanted and take it across the border - there are many examples around the EU where people regularly drive over a border to fill up with cheaper petrol.  So I'm not sure why that patch of fence would have been there at that time.

I think the Brits should have simply said at the start of Brexit:  "For historic and other reasons, we don't want a border.  If you want one that is your problem."  There are plenty of examples of EU countries with totally open borders (the story of the cow, a few weeks ago, that walked over the Bulgarian/Serbian border for example).  It is my view that the EU has deliberately inflated this issue... because they can  AND as you say, the UK needs a leader. 

May is really hopeless at everything.  She just looks weak and useless without doing or saying anything.  In a very competitive field, she is head and shoulders above the rest, as the most incompetent PM ever.

In reply to by 107cicero

DjangoCat EuroPox Mon, 07/09/2018 - 10:18 Permalink

"May is really hopeless at everything.  She just looks weak and useless without doing or saying anything.  In a very competitive field, she is head and shoulders above the rest, as the most incompetent PM ever."

If you believe that May means what she says and is working for the benefit of the people of Britain to achieve the stated goals, I believe you are mistaken.  She is extremely competent at doling out misinformation and doing the exact opposite of what she is saying.  She is a traitor to Britain and a maintainer of an evil status quo.  Her investigations, as Home Secretary, of paedophila in the halls of power was false.

Her accusations against Russia are false.  Her government's support of the White Helmets in Syria is support for a false narrative.

Lies, lies and more lies are where her core competencies are evident.

#FreeTommy #Pizzagate

In reply to by EuroPox

Faeriedust DjangoCat Mon, 07/09/2018 - 19:14 Permalink

But that's what politicians DO.  So what you're saying is that she is indeed competent.  She's merely pursuing an agenda which has nothing to do with her stated intentions.  And since all politicians are tools of the PTB, especially the ones given actual titles and prerogatives, we can be certain that that agenda is dictated by the purposes of the Houses of Rothschild, Morgan, and Warburger, and perhaps a very little bit by the House of Windsor.

In reply to by DjangoCat

107cicero EuroPox Tue, 07/10/2018 - 05:12 Permalink

"May is really hopeless at everything.  She just looks weak and useless without doing or saying anything.  In a very competitive field, she is head and shoulders above the rest, as the most incompetent PM ever."

May is awful but I would  place the Duke of Wellington (1828-1830) and Lord North (1770-1782) who lost North America during his tenure above May as the worst PM's.

Of course, May may yet, in my opinion, still displace these poor chief executives if she keeps going the way she is going.

I don't see why she hasn't been 'resigned' yet?

In reply to by EuroPox

EddieLomax jin187 Mon, 07/09/2018 - 07:36 Permalink

That's a truth that we should have kept in mind from the start, just like with Greece the EU will seek to punish those that threaten its survival.

The irony here is that unlike Greece the UK has all the aces, a stable currency, fairly good treasury, not reliant on exports to EU.

That alone shows how bad democracy is in the UK, clearly the interests making the decisions are not part of the majority of the UK - likely its the bankers here protecting their interests, the fact our only input into the EU (that got cancelled when we left) was in crafting banking regulations says it all.

In reply to by jin187

EddieLomax eforce Mon, 07/09/2018 - 07:25 Permalink

The author of this article things that paying £20 billion pounds a year into the EU is good value for the £180 billion of exports we send over there, a hint - a 20% profit on a trade is doing very very good - no companies make that high a profit, and justifies raising high tariffs from food to cars for international imports.

The author is a moron who really believes a government organisation (the EU) brings prosperity.


On a different note though, he is right in one way, take away all this who-ha and May is trying to get an agreement to leave the EU, but stay signed up to everything in it.  The EU is going to not allow that because they're £20 billion a year out of pocket, either she pays up to near the same amount or no deal.


Mrs May is a totally incompetent moron who cannot see this, either she prepares for a hard brexit and gets a deal done with Trump's US on the table ready to announce the same day we leave the EU.  Or she's going to have the worst of both worlds.

In reply to by eforce

Shropshire Lad eforce Mon, 07/09/2018 - 12:00 Permalink

As soon as the vast German and French manufacturers realise that they are heading for a market disaster, they will insist that the parasites in Brussels stop their destructive activities (so-called negotiations but NYET) and extend the current freetrade regime for as long as it takes for reasonable people to work out a win-win longer-term agreement.

This is a terrible article written by a person who is either ignorant of the current situation or one who has been paid to dispense propaganda.


In reply to by eforce

J. Peasemold G… Pandelis Mon, 07/09/2018 - 06:02 Permalink

Pandelis, I suggest another line of enquiry to follow down the rabbit hole.

Research and attempt to comprehend who benefits, who has the most to gain from Brexit or not to.

It is all about power with politicians ... isn't it? 

My belief is that everything ultimately is all about power, perceived or real, resting with those who are able to control and have the ability to wield it. 

Politicians are merely tools and fools, enabled by those with power, to effect a desired outcome.

Who they are, what they 'stand' for, gender, race or sexual preference is irrelevant unless that trait can be leveraged to fulfil an outcome. All politicians are likend to that of toilet paper, having little substance, perforated morals, smeared with excrement and corruption, foul smelling and universally disposable.

she will do anything to cling into the real estate at checquers (which was not bad at all btw) just a little while longer ... it is sad. 

The true nature of the parasite or leech. But be cautious and attentive as to the next host to which they attach.

why don't these people think about their countryman as well ...

The answer to that is they do think about their countrymen!

And when that 10 seconds of whistful fantasy has passed, and/or the cameras are switched off, they return to doing what they do best i.e. self preservation.

So my question to you is how do we (and by that I mean you, I, and everyone else) wrest back some of the power with the objective of returning sanity and balance to the world without succumbing to the very corruption that we are addressing.

If I ran for political office I fear that there is not enough K-Y in the country to shield me from the inevitable butt-hurt to come.


J. Peasemold Gruntfuttock

In reply to by Pandelis

chubbar Oldguy05 Mon, 07/09/2018 - 07:29 Permalink

What a bunch of bullshit, written by a remainer, no doubt.

Here's the plan: Take all the rules and regulations of the EU that pertain to the UK. Print them up and label them the new UK rules.

DONE. Nothing has changed except for control. Why is this a problem for the EU? Oh yeah, they don't control the UK any longer.

Now, if in the future you need to change a rule, do it. Just that rule or regulation through negotiation. The whole fucking thing doesn't need to be thrown out. This is just a bunch of bullshit thrown up by the EU because they don't want to lose power.

In reply to by Oldguy05