News item I caught late last night:
Moments ago, UK Parliament passed legislation giving prime minister Theresa May approval to start the Brexit process and allowing the government to invoke Article 50, with the House of Commons overturning amendments from the unelected House of Lords that sought to limit May’s room for maneuver. While press reports earlier said May could trigger Article 50 as early as Thursday, subsequent reports from Bloomberg suggested that she will commence Brexit in the last week of March.
The victory for May in Parliament, where she has a slim majority, allows her to negotiate Brexit with a free hand and consolidates her hold on power in the ruling Conservative Party. That said, according to Bloomberg she now faces the simultaneous challenge of pulling Britain out of the EU on good terms while navigating a second constitutional upheaval: Scotland’s renewed bid for independence.
On Monday evening, lawmakers rejected two revisions by unelected peers which would have guaranteed rights for EU citizens living in the U.K. and given Parliament a final binding say on what May negotiates with the EU. The government argued against the changes, saying it wanted to preserve May’s flexibility in the talks. While some Tories had signaled they might vote against the government, several would-be rebels fell into line, or abstained. As Bloomberg adds, May will address the House of Commons on Tuesday, although she isn’t expected to fire the starting gun on exit talks yet.
I’ll believe it when I see it. I’m still far from convinced they’re actually going to leave the EU. It wasn’t very long ago that they were all aboard it, and it was the best thing since sliced bread. Tony Blair even wanted to be its president. No chance of that now, I guess.
And now Sturgeon wants a new Scottish referendum. In fact, she always wants one, as far as I can see. I don’t understand someone who wants Scottish independence, but who’ll only use it in order to sacrifice that Scottish independence for renewed EU membership. She doesn’t want a Westminster parliament, but she’s apparently quite happy with a Brussels one that’s even further away, and even less accountable. Perhaps it all goes back to Mary Queen of Scots, Bonnie Prince Charlie, and Scotland’s historical links to France?
I’ve also read that Britain’s departure from the EU is going to be a nightmare for Ireland, with the border in Ulster/N. Ireland. It’s an open border right now, and I think people cross it at will. Some people are saying there’s a strong new argument for Irish union: N. Ireland becoming part of Ireland. Those Irish who don’t much like the EU could equally say there’s a strong case for Ireland rejoining the UK, which it had been a member of until 1916 or 1922. Or not. Perhaps it goes all the way back to Oliver Cromwell’s siege of Wexford?
I heard on Infowars a few days back that both Marine Le Pen and Geert Wilders are surging in popularity in their respective Dutch and French elections, and might even win. But I don’t believe everything I’m told on Infowars. In fact, I hardly ever believe any of it. But I won’t be at all surprised if they do well, given reports like this:
The European Union (EU) is to open asylum processing centres in West Africa and countries on the southern shore of the Mediterranean because the continent “need[s] six million migrants”, Commissioner for Migration Dimitris Avramopoulos has said.
Speaking in Geneva last week, the Greek Eurocrat denied terror attacks are linked to migration and warned the “biggest threat” to Europe is “the rise of populism, nationalism and xenophobia”.
Declaring “the 27 [member states] will need 6 million immigrants in the future”, Avramopoulos explained the Commission is going to open reception centres to recruit migrants, because an open borders approach would fuel populism.
Here you have a high-handed “Commissioner for Migration” in Brussels calling for another tidal wave of immigration into Europe, just when more and more people who actually live there are getting more and more disturbed about it. Avramopoulos, who probably has his own private Greek island, won’t be in the least bit bothered, of course.
However the most troubling development, and one which has the potential to sway the outcome of the Dutch election which will be held in less than two days, is that in the final power play aimed towards Merkel, Kurtulmus exclaimed that since “Europe has not kept its promises on the migrant deal, for us that agreement has ended.”
Which means that one year after it collected $3 billion for the migrant deal, Turkey has just voided the agreement, and the next step would be that Turkey is about to flood Europe with refugees currently held inside Turkish borders. And since by some estimates Turkey currently harbors over 2 million potential migrants, Europe’s refugee situation is about to get far worse, and as a corollary, support for anti-immigrant political organizations across the continent is about to take another step function higher.