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Saturday, 12 August 2017

Not Another Party, Please!

When it looked as if Jeremy Corbyn was leading Labour to the expected [and deserved] electoral catastrophe a couple of months ago, siren voices were calling for a split in the party; which could lead to the 'moderates' joining up with the LibDems and hoping to attract some Tory Remainer MPs; and thus forming a coalition that could reverse the Brexit decision. The depth of politicians' squalor was again confirmed when Mrs May lost the election and Labour was beefed-up as being a potential governing party. So, although Labour MPs are viscerally split between those who are keen to compromise with Corbyn and those who know him for what he is [an unreconstructed Marxist who has a wide range of casuistic devices], the party has been held together by the fragile cement of ambition.

Subsequently, other voices have been raised - now, within the Tory ranks - hoping to cobble together an anti-Brexit coalition. As with the SDP, it would be impossible for such a party to gain traction with the electorate; even if they had a period of years available to make the attempt. As it is, the Brussels clock is ticking down to March 2019; and the chances of getting Mrs May to understand anything of the ruin to which she is driving the nation are minimal. There is not time enough to reconfigure British politics, or to educate the prime minister.

The great majority of MPs, mostly with regret, accept that the referendum vote was decisive. The question was whether the UK should "leave the European Union" or "remain in the European Union". There was no definition of the European Union. It was left unstated whether the European Economic Area, or the European Economic Community [the common market and customs union] - as Mrs May now says is inextricably the case - were included in the vote. This is the basis on which honest men and women who accept the referendum result can legitimately believe that the vote was to withdraw from the political aspects of the EU - the Parliament, the Commission and the Court - but not to undermine the economy by withdrawal from the economic area.

From everything that I have heard and read in recent weeks, there could well now be a strong majority of the electorate in favour of splitting the economic from the political aspects of the Union. The Economic Community pre-existed the Union, and membership of that club was clearly accepted in the referendum on withdrawal that was held under Harold Wilson's premiership. The electorate was not allowed an opinion on the transmutation of the Community into the undemocratic morass of Brussels under the nomenclature of the Union [and with the intention that the Union should become 'ever-closer': which means 'ever less accountable to the people']. I believe that a national petition - a reflection of the People's Charter of the 1840s - might be the most effective way of proving to the boneheaded Brexiteers that a very clear majority of the nation is capable of making the distinction between the Community and the Union.

If that could be proven, I like to think that majority of MPs have sufficient dregs of integrity then to act as representatives of the nation, and compel the government [whether the present shoddy shower, or a coalition containing the heavily-compromised Corbyn] to make a sensible and mutually beneficial deal to remain in the Community.

The issues of the European Court and of migration would remain to be resolved; but they will be much easier to define within the context outlined above. Time is short, but there is enough time to implement this suggestion of a People's Charter, deploying the resources of up-to-date social media.

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