An epoch-making, somehow vague event in the past divides the country in a time before and a time after the Change. The whole British island is protected by something reminding the Chinese wall: the Wall. Beaches are something from old ages, as far as the young are concerned. Every young woman and man has to serve on this Wall for two strenuous years. Consequences are extrem: If the Others – the foe – can overcome the Wall, the people from the Guard will be punished by set on tiny boats on the ocean.
This is the sound of John Lanchesters novel published in the mid-Brexit UK. In Covid19 times future readers might read it in a simular way: the time before and the time after Covid19. Gloomy dystopian novelle, a little bit soothed by the story of a couple – the word love story would be too much. Covid19 time is reading time.
It’s done: the Brexit will happen tomorrow night at 11 p.m. and the UK’s EU membership will end definitely. Yesterday the European parliament accepted the Brexit proposal with broad consent. Reactions were quite predictable: Nigel Farage rejoiced in the outcome of the whole procedure. Many, particularly young, members of the EU parliament expressed their sadness und hope that this may be not the last word.
Whether the treaties for the further relationship between the EU and the UK will be ready by June or July is rather unclear. Many experts expressed their doubts. The rest of the year would be needed for the long haul process of ratification in all the European national parliaments. Some even fear that this could be another attempt to force a hard Brexit.
How will the future long term relationship between the EU and the UK look like? If BoJo will undermine European product and labour standards they will be frostily. He still has to learn that he is in the weaker position: It’s the dog that wags the tail, not the other way round.
Thank God, the UK will still be part of Europe in general. But one must hope that e.g. Erasmus and the exchange of students and scientists will grant enough communication between both. Others are less happy: Many binational or continental families in the UK are anxious about their future citizenship.
Need some famous last words? Fare thee well, UK, and perhaps “au revoir“.
Even arrangements with Boris Johnson and Rees-Mogg didn’t give Theresa May the boost desparately needed to bring her Brexit plan through parliament. What comes seems more like substituting the will of parliament by a random choice generator. There is a concerning lack of any player to gather people around one solution that would represent the majority of the British people. This is true for the Tories and for Labour. If both parties break up UKIP and other brain-damaged groups will have a greater impact on politics.
UK, when did you lose your common sense you once were famous for?
Strange enough that 36 days before 29th of March no strategy, no plan B, C, D, E or F nor anything reasonable seem to exist in the UK. The only news is that 9 members from Labour and three members from the Torries have defected from there old parties.
Another thing are the consequences for employment: Airbus, Ford, Honda and even Dyson have just announced oder already taken severe consequences for the months to come. That means many jobs will be lost.
For me as a German it is sometimes entertaining to see sessions in the British parliament and enjoy the vivid atmosphere. That is often missing in the German Bundestag and since Mr. Lammert has retired we have no-one to compare to Mr. Bercow. But there is one advantage for Germany compared to the UK: There is a greater tradition to compromise, especially concerning big issues. I hope British parliament will find a compromise before 29th of March, but – I must admit – sometimes I think They have to learn it the hard way. Wait and see…
Nearly everyone wonders why Theresa May is doing this real odd job: She hadn’t invoked this unbelievable mess around Brexit, but is now repeating again and again the “strong and stable” or the “we will deliver” mantra of a Brexit to come. Is she that naive to hope that in the very last minute a deus ex machina will offer a solution with a back-stop acceptable to everyone? Or that sufficient members of her Torry party enforced by a few Labour members will back the treaty she gained from EU in parliament?
To me it looks like a most likely head-on collision that may impact European politics for the next twenty years.