It is official. This afternoon, the Prime Minister, standing outside 10 Downing Street, let there be no doubt, Brexit has driven the British Establishment batshit crazy. It was bad enough, when late last year, the Daily Mail labelled three high court judges “Enemies of the People”, for ruling that the Government could not use royal prerogative to invoke article 50, and those still opposed to Brexit as “Bremoaners”, accusing them of a plot to “subvert the will of the British people”.
Things got even more sinister, when failed, former Tory leader, Michael Howard claimed that Theresa May would go to war to protect Gibraltar. But at least that could be more or less written off as an unhelpful intervention from a daft old duffer, craving attention. Not so today. Today’s madness came from the Prime Minister, Theresa May, herself. She said,
“In the last few days we have seen just how tough these talks are likely to be. Britain's negotiating position in Europe has been misrepresented in the continental press. The European Commission's negotiating stance has hardened. Threats against Britain have been issued by European politicians and officials. All of these acts have been deliberately timed to affect the result of the general election that will take place on June 8.”
It seems as though Theresa has gone all Trump on us, imagining interference, where there is none. It may well be that Team Theresa, do in fact believe, as the Daily Mail (again) would have it, that the EU are “ganging up” on them. What did they expect? The EU and the UK were never going to be negotiating on equal terms. One is a supranational union, a members only club, among the world’s largest trading blocs, made up of 27 nations, the other is not. The other, having decided to leave the EU, is just an ordinary medium sized country, made up of four nations, the largest of which still harbours a strong (if utterly deluded) sense of exceptionalism.
The British Establishment have no cause for complaint. If they were in a position to bully and berate, to domineer and dominate the EU, then they would not hesitate for one minute to do so. It is what they do, and what they have always done, whenever they have been in a position to do so. You do not have to look any further than here in Scotland to see that. We are told not only what we need, what we want, and what we will get, but that we must also be grateful for it.
Unless the EU, by some miracle or other, can bring enough influence to bear upon the British public, as to deliver a Liberal Democrat government on June 8th, there is little or nothing to be gained by making “threats” and “misrepresentation”, as the Theresa May, rather hysterically suggested. I strongly suspect that her words were deliberately designed to infuriate Brexiteer Little England, resulting in voters rallying behind the Tories at the ballot box. If so, it is contemptible, cynical, and not at all clever, though it will most probably work (with readers of the Daily Mail and the like, at any rate).
Though the British Establishment, deluded and lacking self-awareness, have yet to accept that they are just not going to get a better deal out of the EU, than in, Team Theresa perhaps have. As ever, the Tories are utterly incapable of seeing beyond the immediate to short-term. This, as far as I can recall, has been the case my entire lifetime. It partly explains why the UK is in the state that it is in. Do we, in Scotland, really need to be saddled with such short-sighted stupidity?