1/13 It is hard for a remain/rejoiner not to feel frustrated by @UKLabour right now. Starmer's silence on Brexit is deafening. theguardian.com/politics/2021/…
2/13 I wrote about what remain/rejoiner's attitudes towards @UKLabour should be a little while ago, urging patience and for party members to put their weight behind @Labour4EU.
3/13 I am continuing to hold my nerve right now, but I think @Keir_Starmer is in danger of making a bad mistake, losing the support of remain/rejoiners while failing to regain the trust of the red wall leavers (who were fewer in number than commonly supposed anyway).
4/13 Remaining silent about the damage caused by Brexit will not make that damage go away, and will make @UKLabour's voice less powerful when talking about it becomes unavoidable. Brexit isn't over; it isn't going away anytime soon.
5/13 I also think flag waving will be counter-productive, for reasons eloquently explained by Council Estate Voices (it seems false and will not persuade working class voters): councilestatemedia.uk/2021/02/can-st…
6/13 Apart from anything else, the Tories will always out-fascist anything @UKLabour can do, so emmulating them is madness - a hiding to nothing that will just accelerate Britian's shift towards Orban-style totalitarianism.
7/13 @UKLabour's silence on Brexit is simply from fear that the Tories will use Brexit against them if they dare speak it's name. I say, so what? There is now a clear majority of the population that thinks Brexit was a terrible mistake.
8/13 Also @UKLabour are in danger of taking the population for idiots. Ordinary people can understand that rejoining the single market and customs union would solve many, many of our current problems. There's a half-way house between leave and rejoin that needs explaining.
9/13 But @UKLabour obviously needs help to overcome its fear. It needs big nudges from both inside and outside the party, to show it that greater engagement with the EU is a winning ticket not a losing one. independent.co.uk/news/uk/politi…
10/13 This is why, as soon as coronavirus restrictions allow, we need strong public demonstrations in favour of greater engagement with Europe. @UKLabour needs to be shown the strength of feeling on this - feelings that they can capitalise on but the Tories can't.
11/13 And those of who are members of @UKLabour, like me, need to increase the pressure from within in any way possible - in our local constituencies and party conferences.
12/13 The ministerial appointment of the dismal Frost shows that, left to their own devices, the Tories will try and increase conflict with the EU and weaponise it to promote the uber-nationalism (near fascism) that they see as the key to their survival. theguardian.com/commentisfree/…
13/13 Any true patriot can see that this kind of nationalism can only lead to disaster. We must therefore do everything we can to make @UKLabour change direction. Most MPs and Party members want to, so it can be made to happen. It's just a matter of applying enough pressure.


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More from @RichardBentall

10 Jan

I am pretty annoyed about Starmer's statement about FoM on the Marr Show today, but I'm still not sure what the thinking behind it is. If it's just that this is not the time to talk about EU allignment, fair enough, but it could have been expressed in a more nuanced way.

Because, rest assured, there will have to be a reallignment with the EU. This will be necessitated not only by the economics but also, most likely, by unfolding events in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

I am not convinced that complete endorsement of the Tory's Brexit is required to win back the red wall seats; its not what a careful analysis of polling says and it's, frankly, treating red wall voters as idiots while pandering to their supposed idiocy (pretty patronising).
Read 19 tweets
25 Dec 20
1/20 This is a Christmas message to my wonderful pro-European friends, especially but not exclusively #FPBE. This is a difficult time for our movement, as it is at last confirmed that the UK will be leaving the EU customs union and single market in a few days time.
2/20 Maybe you are feeling demoralised. Maybe like me you acutely feel the pain of having your European citizenship and identity stolen from you in an act of naked vandalism. Maybe you feel that a hole has been torn in your heart that will never be repaired.
3/20 At this time, it would be easy to rant about the economic lunacy of cutting ourselves off from our nearest, biggest market, or about huge losses that we will suffer in excluding ourselves from EU projects like Erasmus, Galileo and REACH. But that can wait for another day.
Read 21 tweets
6 Dec 20
1/ This is a completely dishonest account of the events that led us to this point, but (I will give Barrister's Horse this) cleverly crafted. At each stage, the pathway is misrepresented to blame remainers for the catastrophe that is about to be inflicted on the UK by leavers.
2/ For example, in tweet 5 we are told that the Benn Bill was 'allegedly' drawn up by EU lawyers. Nice conspiracy theory. Which EU lawyers?

What is the argument against the content of the bill (none presented that I can see)?
3/ In tweet 6 the issues surrounding prorogation are completely misrepresented. It was a deliberatey antidemocratic attempt to suppress Parliamentary debate on the most important issue of the age and found illegal by the Supreme Court (but, hey, Barister's Horse knows better?).
Read 14 tweets
5 Dec 20
1/4 At this point in the Brexit process, when we remainers can only wait in horror, like passengers in a bus with defective breaks that is hurtling towards a cliff, it’s important to remember three simple but utterly fundamental truths.
2/4 Truth #1: The only possible way of maintaining our economy, our individual rights, peace in Ireland, our global reputation and the Union was to stay in the single market and customs union.
3/4 Truth #2: We could have stayed in the SM and CU while leaving the EU (and possibly had more control over fishing), although there would be some small (to my mind trivial in the scheme of things) sacrifices over sovereignty.
Read 5 tweets
11 Sep 20
So here is where we are now:

Johnson has told the world he intends to break international law and jeopardise the GFA while, at the same time, Herr Führage is literally trying to organize malitas to patrol our beaches while demanding that the WA must be completely repudiated. 1/
Meanwhile, EU Parliament says that it will veto UK FTA if Johnson does not back down, and the Americans are saying no trade deal with them if GFA is jeopardised. The twin effects will be economically and politically catastrophic. /2
Johnson is in zugzwang but I doubt whether he can face up to the humiliation of backing down or that many Tories will have the balls to stand up to him or Führage and his neofascist mobs. They will whine but ultimately comply. /3
Read 10 tweets
10 Sep 20
Brexit is a cult beyond reason; more like a religion than a serious policy initiative. To see that this is true, it just has to be noted that in Brexitier ideology EVERYTHING is the EXACT OPPOSITE to what it is claimed to be. EVERYTHING! 1/
For example, Brexitiers claim to be for free trade, and to achieve this they are imposing massive and expensive trade barriers with our nearest and biggest trading partners. These will increase costs of imports/exports and intoduce delays, wrecking just-in-time production. 2/
(I've been trying to find a historical precedent for this. the only one I know of is the tariffs imposed by the Smoot-Hawley Tariff act of 1930 in the USA, which are thought to have contributed to the Great Depression. Let me know if you think of any other precedents.) 3/
Read 13 tweets

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