Reply To: Elections Aftermath: Was our 2019 Vote & the EU Referendum Rigged? #TORYRIG2019

Home Forums Discussion Forum Elections Aftermath: Was our 2019 Vote & the EU Referendum Rigged? #TORYRIG2019 Reply To: Elections Aftermath: Was our 2019 Vote & the EU Referendum Rigged? #TORYRIG2019

Kim Sanders-Fisher

Those who now have access to our ‘deal’ with the EU are judiciously scrutinizing the document the PM produced in a flurry of effusive PR spin on Christmas Eve. The London Economic’s Jack Peat sums up our, “Reaction as Boris Johnson says trade deal is his Xmas present for the country ‘Well, in that case, I’d like to return it’. Boris Johnson has used a festive message to the nation to urge people to read the new Brexit trade deal after Christmas lunch on Friday. The Prime Minister posted a video on Twitter in which he brandished the document, which has not been released in full yet, and at one point punched the air with enthusiasm at its contents. Mr Johnson said: ‘Tonight, on Christmas Eve, I have a small present for anyone who may be looking for something to read in that sleepy post-Christmas lunch moment, and here it is, tidings, glad tidings of great joy because this is a deal. ‘A deal to give certainty to business, travellers, and all investors in our country from January 1. A deal with our friends and partners in the EU’.”

Did he really have to make us feel so ill before we had the chance to become well ‘braced’ with celebratory plonk? But he had to bring it up, “You remember the oven ready deal by which we came out on January 31, that oven ready deal was just the start, this is the feast, full of fish, by the way.” He tried hard to project his delusional positivity saying, “I believe it will be the basis of a happy and successful and stable partnership with our friends in the EU for years to come. So, that’s it, that’s the good news from Brussels now for the sprouts, and a happy Christmas to you all’.” It hit us with a thud, cold, hard, Brexit, like stale leftovers lurking at the back of the fridge; not at all appetizing. Peat reported that, “Before posting the video, Mr Johnson hailed the deal as a new beginning after securing the agreement before the UK’s final break with Brussels on New Year’s Eve.”

Peat reported that “Reaction elsewhere has hardly been complementary,” and he shared a few of the best. Peter Stefanovic Tweeted: “At the risk of repeating myself it’s cost the country £200bn, robbed British citizens of free movement, stripped our youth of the enrichment of Erasmus & made every one but your millionaire chums poorer for years to come. That’s some ‘gift’.” But my favorite Tweet was from, Remoaning Myrtle #FBPE @TheAndyMaturin “This is the shittest Christmas gift I’ve ever received, and my brother once gave me a toilet brush.” Well that probably sums up the disgust of half the country so why are we prepared to choke down more Tory pain and suffering? The extreme level of corruption over the squandering of public money including to pay for defaming the opposition in the Covert 2019 Rigged Election has already been exposed even before an Investigation into how the Tories stole a ‘landslide victory’ after an abysmal election campaign. We cannot continue ignoring illegal practice scandals!

In the London Economic Article entitled, “Brexit trade deal ‘isn’t far off a no deal’ think tank warns – There is no country in the world that will be subject to as many export rules to us as the UK,” Jack Peat relays the dismal news of our last ditch reprive from crashing-out if the EU on WTO Terms. He says the, “Think tank IPPR has warned that the Brexit trade deal struck at the 11th hour ‘isn’t far off a no deal’ and will introduce major barriers to trade. Boris Johnson hailed the historic trade deal struck with the EU as a ‘new beginning’ for Britain that resolves the European question that has ‘bedevilled’ British politics for generations. Following months of negotiations, an agreement was finally struck on Christmas Eve between the two sides with the Prime Minister subsequently announcing the UK had ‘taken back control’ of its future. But Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer branded it a ‘thin’ deal – even though he admitted his party would back it in a vote, which is expected to take place in the Commons next week.”

Peat reports that, “Marley Morris, IPPR Associate Director for Immigration, Trade and EU Relations, said: ‘For a deal with the UK’s closest neighbour and largest trading partner, this agreement is remarkably weak. In many respects this agreement isn’t far off a no deal. Crucially, this deal will not prevent the introduction of major trade barriers between the UK and the EU in one week’s time. While undoubtedly better than a no deal outcome, this deal offers little in critical areas of trade, including on the mutual recognition of professional qualifications, on financial services, and on technical barriers to trade. Despite the Prime Minister’s claim that there will be ‘no non-tariff barriers to trade’, new customs and regulatory controls are set to kick in on January 1st which are likely to cause considerable disruption. ‘Even where the deal offers benefits through maintaining tariff-free trade, it is not clear whether businesses will have time to prepare to meet ‘rules of origin’ requirements and so may end up being forced to pay tariffs in any case’.”

Peat notes that, “Scrutiny of the Brexit trade agreement with the European Union has begun after the full document was published less than a week before it is due to be implemented. Both sides published the treaty running at up to 1,255 pages on the morning of Boxing Day, as Boris Johnson works to persuade Eurosceptic Tories to back it as the ‘right deal’ for the country. The Prime Minister acknowledged “the devil is in the detail” but insisted it would stand up to inspection from the European Research Group (ERG) of Brexiteers, who will assemble a panel of lawyers to examine the full text. His message to Tory MPs came as the EU’s 27 member states indicated they will formally back the deal agreed by the UK with Brussels’ officials within days.”

Peat reports that, “EU ambassadors were briefed on the contents of the deal by Michel Barnier, who led Brussels’ negotiating team in the talks with the UK. After a highly unusual meeting on Christmas Day – with at least one diplomat wearing a Santa hat and another in a festive jumper, they agreed to write to the European Parliament to say they intend to take a decision on the provisional application of the deal. The timing of the Christmas Eve deal forced politicians and officials in the UK and Brussels to tear up their plans. MPs and peers will be called back to Westminster on December 30 to vote on the deal, but MEPs are not expected to approve it until the new year, meaning it will have to apply provisionally until they give it the green light. The agreement will almost certainly be passed by Parliament, with Labour supporting it, as the alternative would be a chaotic no-deal situation on January 1.”

Peat says that, “Mr Johnson is keen to retain the support of the Eurosceptics on his benches who helped him reach No 10. On Saturday, Conservative former Cabinet minister Theresa Villiers told BBC Breakfast: ‘I very much hope this treaty stands up to scrutiny and I hope to be able to support it. ‘But I was elected on a manifesto which promised to get Brexit done so I need to read (the document) before I can work out whether this actually enables us to do that or whether it traps us in the regulatory orbit of the European Union. I truly believe this is the right deal for the UK and the EU’ Mr Johnson messaged Tory MPs on WhatsApp as he tried to get them all on side. ‘I truly believe this is the right deal for the UK and the EU’,” he wrote. “We have delivered on every one of our manifesto commitments: control of money, borders, laws, fish and all the rest. “But even more important, I believe we now have a basis for long-term friendship and partnership with the EU as sovereign equals.”

According to Peat, “He added that ‘I know the devil is in the detail’ but the deal will survive ‘ruthless’ scrutiny from the ‘star chamber legal eagles’. The ‘star chamber’ is the nickname given to the panel assembled by the ERG, including veteran Eurosceptic Sir Bill Cash. Cabinet minister Michael Gove, writing in The Times, said the deal will create a new ‘special relationship’ – a term usually used to refer to UK-US links – and end the ‘ugly’ politics since the 2016 Brexit referendum. No country in the world will be subject to as many export rules to us as the UK. Officials in Brussels and the capitals of EU states are also beginning to scrutinise the deal, with another meeting of ambassadors expected before the new year, possibly on December 28.”

Peat reports that, “The European Commission has also announced a £4.5 billion fund to help regions and industries within the bloc which will be hit by the UK’s withdrawal from the single market and customs union – including fishing communities who face losing out as the UK takes a greater share of stock in British waters. French Europe minister Clement Beaune said it was a ‘good agreement’ and stressed the EU had not accepted a deal ‘at all costs’. He told broadcaster Europe 1 ‘we needed an agreement less than the British’ as ‘for them, it was a vital need’. Mr Beaune said British food and industrial products entering the European single market after January 1 will not pay customs duties ‘but will have to meet all our standards. There is no country in the world that will be subject to as many export rules to us as the UK,’ he said.”

Peat said that,“Mr Johnson used his Christmas message to sell the deal to a public weary of Brexit after years of acrimonious wrangling since the referendum. ‘Glad tidings of great joy’ Brandishing a sheaf of papers he said it offered ‘glad tidings of great joy’. The deal covers trade worth about £660 billion and means goods can be sold without tariffs or quotas in the EU market. The share of fish in British waters that the UK can catch will rise from about half now to two-thirds by the end of the five-and-a-half-year transition. At a Downing Street press conference on Christmas Eve, Mr Johnson said ‘we will as a result of this deal be able to catch and eat quite prodigious quantities of extra fish’, with £100 million for the industry to modernise and expand. But Barrie Deas, chief executive of the National Federation of Fishermen’s Organisations, said there will be ‘frustration and anger’ across the industry, telling the PA news agency: “In the end it was clear that Boris Johnson wanted an overall trade deal and was willing to sacrifice fishing.”

In the London Economic Article entitled, “Army drafted in as thousands of hauliers remain stuck in Kent,” Jack Peat reveals the Irony as, “Barry Sheerman said it was a shame that the PM nor any members of his cabinet didn’t have the courage to pay them a visit. Thousands of international lorry drivers will spend Boxing Day in their cabs after almost a week of disruption at the English Channel border. Around 3,000 hauliers were still waiting to cross into France from Kent on Friday evening despite hundreds of troops being drafted in to help clear the backlog. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said, while 4,500 lorries had crossed the channel since French authorities eased restrictions on Wednesday, more vehicles were continuing to arrive ‘every hour’.”

Peat reports that, “France closed its border last Sunday following the discovery of a fast-spreading mutant Covid-19 strain in the UK, causing severe disruptions at the Port of Dover. Drivers wishing to enter the country from the UK must now show proof of a negative Covid-19 test taken in the past 72 hours. Some 1,100 military personnel have since been deployed to Kent to help test hauliers queued at the nearby Manston Airport, on a closed section of the M20, and in the town of Dover itself. Some drivers have already spent nearly a week stranded due to the diplomatic impasse.”

Peat relays the mammoth task ahead, saying, “Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said more than 10,000 Covid-19 tests have been carried out so far, of which 24 returned a positive result. He said: ‘The British Army is again showing why it is world class, ramping up testing and feeding hauliers stranded by the Covid restrictions, while helping oversee the operation in Kent. ‘But let’s not forget the tireless effort of the police, civilian testers, council planners and port and ferry workers. These thousands of people, military and civilians, have given up their Christmas to help drivers separated from their loved ones through no fault of their own’.” The PM and his Tory Ministers are great at praising those who step in to clear up their repeated shambolic messes… as long as they don’t expect a pay rise! “However Labour MP Barry Sheerman tweeted: ‘Thousands of truck drivers stranded in dire circumstances at Dover & the Prime Minister nor any member of his cabinet with the courage to pay them a visit on Christmas Day #ShameonYou’.”

Peat continues saying, “Army personnel had tested more than 6,200 drivers as of Christmas Day, while also being tasked with distributing food and water, the MoD said. Traffic was moving smoothly through Dover on Friday, with French firefighters and the Polish military’s Territorial Defence Force also drafted in to help with testing. Poland has codenamed its operation Zumbach, after the Polish Second World War pilot Jan Zumbach, who fought for the allies in the Battle of Britain, the country’s UK embassy said. Germany’s ambassador to the UK, Andreas Michaelis, said some German hauliers had managed to make it home for Christmas, while others remained in Kent. He tweeted: ‘Some of the German lorry drivers we’ve been in touch with are on their way home or at home already. Others sadly remain stuck. “I sincerely hope things will start moving for them soon. This is a difficult Christmas. Our thoughts are with them’.”

Peat reports how, “Various individuals and organisations have volunteered to help the stranded drivers by providing them with food and drink. Mubashir Ahmad Siddiqi, 60, and his two 20-year-old sons Qasim and Hamza, from Barking in east London, spent six hours helping to prepare 1,000 portions of chicken biryani on Friday for those stuck in Kent. Mr Siddiqi said: ‘Ten of us from the Ahmadiyya Muslim community and the Ahmadiyya Muslim youth association managed to drop off over 1,000 meals, 1,200 chocolate bars and drinks for the lorry drivers.’ He added: ‘It’s a great feeling to be able to help those who are alone at the moment and we hope that through our humble efforts we were able to cheer them up with the food packages.’ HM Coastguard said its teams in the Dover area had also delivered 3,000 hot meals, 600 pizzas, 2,985 packed lunches and 17 pallets of water to those waiting. The MoD said 800 additional soldiers were deployed on Friday as part of Operation Rose to support the 300 personnel already there.”

In another London Economic Article entitled, “Polish forces and French firefighters muck in to clear Kent lorry backlog,” Jack Peat notes ironically how, “The day after the UK decided we don’t need Europe we get French firemen and Polish territories to assist with Covid testing.” He says, “French firefighters and the Polish military’s Territorial Defence Force have been drafted in to help clear the backlog of lorries at the border in Kent. In a show of international solidarity more than 10,000 coronavirus tests were carried out in a bid to clear the hauliers waiting to cross the English Channel on Christmas Day. The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said about 4,500 trucks had crossed the channel as of Friday afternoon, but added that more vehicles continue to arrive ‘every hour’. Drivers are required to show proof of a negative Covid-19 test before entering France, resulting in long queues.”

The Tweets were scathing, Jason J Hunter (Not a noble Lord) @JJHTweets “Quite crazy that @BorisJohnson only announced his great new deal last night and less than 24 hours later the UK has Polish troops and French firemen providing humanitarian aid to thousands of people in Kent.” Polish Embassy UK @PolishEmbassyUK, “Military personnel of the Territorial Defence Force @terytorialsi arrived in the to support #COVID19 testing of stranded track drivers at the border & assist with food distribution. #StrongerTogether.” Mike Bazaluk @mbazaluk “brilliant the day UK decided we don’t need Europe, we get German food air lift, French firemen and polish territorials to assist covid testing, baling out the Dover farce, rubbish government #thankyo.” A fine example of how the plucky Brits “took back control,” but I doubt it will embarrass the PM or his Brexiteer chums, they are too busy squandering public funds. One person said, “They received cereal bars from local authorities…shocking! Thanks to EU partners!”

But other desperate people all over the UK were also quing for enough food to get their impoverished families through Christmes. In the London Economic Article entitled, “‘Dickensian’ pictures show long queues at food banks over Christmas,” Jack Peat weighs in saying, “I don’t know how to describe it – it took the wind out of your sails. It’s just shocking to see so many people really in such deprivation.” He says, “Pictures of long queues outside food banks this Christmas have been labelled ‘Dickensian’ by social media users. People waited in the rain outside Newcastle’s West End Foodbank to make sure they had enough provisions over the festive period.”

Peat says, “Saddened by the scenes, branch CO CEO John McCorry asked for one of the volunteers to take a picture of it, later talking to the Chronicle to express his dismay. ‘I came up the road to work and it was just shocking to see the numbers coming out of Benwell. I don’t know how to describe it, it took the wind out of your sails. It’s just shocking to see so many people really in such deprivation. When I saw the number of people in the rain I just thought, oh my God. I just felt sorry for the people who needed to come here to queue to make sure they have a decent Christmas meal.’ He said another sobering thought was that people hadn’t just turned up there but had been referred to them by another charity or organisation and given a voucher for an emergency food parcel. It was the biggest queue he had seen at the foodbank, McCorry said, adding that the Coronavirus pandemic had contributed as it has had a disproportionate impact on low income households and families living in poverty.”

Peat reports that, “In November the foodbank, run by the Trussell Trust charity, honored 1,600 vouchers and issued food parcels that fed 4,404 people. This number is up significantly on the same period last year and December is proving even busier, he said. In all 32,000 people were beneficiaries of food parcels issued in the 12 months to March 2020.” The British public better get used to queing as even as the backlog of trucks clears hauliers may be seriously reluctant to take on more deliveries to the UK until the Brits get their post-Brexit act together and there could be shortages. All of this chaos and extreme hardship was avoidable with proper governance so why scandal after money squandering scandal are we ignoring the obvious: this corrupt Tory Government must be removed from office ASAP before more people die due to their shambolic handling of the Covid crisis. We must demand a complete reset in this country or its poorest citizens will again be forced to pay through austerity for repeated Tory mistakes. DO NOT MOVE ON!