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  1. Apparently, the pardon which Trump issued to Bannon does not extend to Bannon's running that Wall-building donations fraud, about which the State court can still indict him. Delighted. 'I still won bigly, you fraud'
  2. Sunak found a jungle's worth of money trees, then? You are presuming that these claims will be honoured... ...when fishing and seafood businesses are merely the first 2 seats of the first carriage of a miles-long train nicknamed "UK plc". It's not the sort of presumption that I would feel confident enough to stake my business' continuity on. Not when there's a planeload or ten of carpetbaggers circling and waiting for the derailment, to then swoop in and pillage the wreckage for nowt; and then stash the proceeds in BVI and Jersey banks.
  3. Quoted for truth. Lobster tandoori is really quite something. Enhanced tax avoidance is a feature of Brexit, not a bug. It's plebes' money that they want to keep in the UK. So expect capital controls before too long (on top of customs restrictions in destination EU countries), now that FoM of capital has been removed.
  4. People may wish to brush up on their Adam Smith. Historical evidence is that autarky doesn't work any better than state-planned economy. And geography still dictates the gravity pull in trade. The UK needs to stick with its international trade, it was doing a sterling job of it until the headbangers took charge and made it declare economic war on itself. Businesses just need to find their balls and put a Biden into no.10 Downing Street post-haste, whilst re-learning old-fashioned international trade fast, and slowly rebuilding bridges with trade partners.
  5. We seem to be at cross purposes. When I said "it's not something MPs and HMG can sort", I was referring to those red tape standards of international trade, to which UK businesses (and HMRC & HMBF &...) must (re-)adapt. MPs & HMG cannot change these. They can create more bureaucracy to help UK businesses to navigate it, sure. In that respect, their incompetence lies in not doing that early and well enough (acknowledging it back in 2016, instead of calling it 'Project Fear' and hand-waving it away, would have been a great help....but then, they may not have got the voting result that they were after in 2016, then in 2017, then in 2019). The take-away point is, no amount of shellfish trailer running (and maybe even discharging) past the window of no.10 downing street is going to achieve anything with that 'red tape' now or in the foreseeable future. Except hurrying the gvt in finding and training those 50k customs persons. That takes time, a lot of it (1 to 2 years acc.to experienced customs specialists). Blaming either red tape, or gvt incompetence, or the EU, or Remainers, or all of them together plus the neighbour's cat, doesn't begin to fix the problem, which is what is needed most urgently of all.
  6. Well, I've drawn attention to these missing 50,000 customs agents before. Time and again, and again recently. Where is HMG at with those, 2 or 3 years after it estimated that shortfall and claimed that it was recruiting and training them? The last figure I saw, late last year, was circa.1600 and the private sector was building them golden bridges right out of HMG training courses. What is HMG proposing to do about the missing vets? They can't exactly be magicked out of vet schools with weeks or months, and between Covid, Brexit and Patel's HO/hostile environment, the UK isn't exactly head-lining with headhunters atm, still less positions in the UK civil service or govt contracting providers. How is the government going to fix the ISPM15 shortage? <next huge problem that noone in the UK seems to be talking about, even though Palletways (look them up) has been signalling the issue loud and clear for months, and now just joined DHL & DB Schenker in washing its hands off UK freight for the next few weeks at least> So yes, I'm afraid, very much so. At least until HMG begins to engage in governance, instead of damage control by propaganda which, unsurprisingly, doesn't control any damage but just continues to hide it...ever less effectively. Those artics going around Downing Street today are not believing hard enough, looks like. I've kept services out of the loop deliverately, btw. The UK-EU27 agreement has no provisions for those. That's why those €6bn's worth of EU shares fled UK trading floors the moment they re-opened on 4 January. The EPP is today asking the Commission for a plan to 'repatriate' still more financial services from the City faster.
  7. Way-way-way too early, to be discussing about any "potential" to "achieve" anyway. And I don't mean that with reference to Jacob Rees-Mogg's 50 year timescale for Brexit benefits to be reached, but with reference to the just-started period of adjustment to the new international trade (import/export) 'normal' for the UK. It's only been 2 weeks or so. That 'new' red tape strangling mal-adapted fishermen, pork farmers and a raft of other agrifood producers (with the test of UK plc in tow and yet to realise) is not 'new', it is the *standard* red tape for 3rd country exporters to EU (and non-EU but still CUSM) member states. It is not something which MPs or the government can 'sort out', ever, until and unless the UK should move closer to BRINO, no matter how loud and anguished and angry the howls from fishermen, farmers, associations, federations and other lobby groups get. So, a lot of dust needs to settle first and, at the scale of the UK economy, that is going to take a long while. Quick note in passing (not @ you Bargepole23): there haven't been any 'Remainers' for nearly a year now. But there is a growing movement of 'Rejoiners'. Hopefully for you all it won't take 40-odd years to achieve.
  8. Speaking of fishes and Crown depencies...the Falklands want a word, since it found out that Johnson's deal with the EU does not extend to UK Overseas Territories: 90% of its catch goes (went) to the EU and is now tariffed between 6% and 18% (Falklands meat that also goes (went) to the EU is now tariffed at 42%), besides the import-export red tape. Hopefully they can 'do a Gibraltar' and quickly join Mercosur, with which the EU is close to signing a deal.
  9. Well, far from orbital considerations, there's many other rule-setting supranational clubs beside the EU, that the UK is still a member of, and which it could yet leave. NATO, WTO, UN, ECHR, (...). But I've not heard anything from UKIP, about leaving any one of those? Heck, after Brexit, we could do with a new one to chat about 'Consequences'
  10. What political purpose does UKIP serve, exactly, in these post-Brexit, post-Withdrawal Agreement days?
  11. The ERG is flying that kite early, to see what kind of traction it's getting from employers. There are a few more kites like that getting flown atm, all mooted under 'Operation Bleach', that are not getting reported. Even the reintroduction of the death penalty (don't expect the HO to confirm that one anytime soon, any more than it -and any other Ministry- would confirm those other kites). It's all about political re- (pre-) -positioning. It's not as if British workers can easily vote with their feet under FoM anymore. And employers are going to need something to keep the cosh on them, after all those EU immigrants went home last year during the Covid crisis. Plus they can be fed on fresh, quality seafood for cheap now. Zero sympathy for those fishermen who were championing Leave loud and clear, pre- and post-refrendum, to pull the ladder to themselves at the expense of other fishermen from Europe. These weren't conned: they were the con.
  12. The real risk is that EU27 hauliers continue to boycott the UK and ferry companies divert still more ships to alternative routes (Stena just reassigned MV Embla to Rosslare-Cherbourg today, was meant to start from Belfast) over the next couple months (or worse, longer) - whilst Brexit stockpiles run out, business cashflows get depleted, people's shopping spend goes through the roof...and then the grace period for light-touch customs checks and procedures ends on 1st April. Truck queues will actually be a welcome sight, it means trade will have resumed. Then you can take a look at "normal" truck queues at the Polish-Ukraine border (Ukraine has a DCFTA with the EU, the UK doesn't ), likewise "normal" truck queues at the German-Swiss border (Swiss is EFTA and German customs are highly efficient, moreover with a dedicated customs-facilitating app since mid-2018) for an idea of what to expect once the UK has progressed a little (-closer to the EU) from the current super-thin FTA.
  13. One is reminded of Leavers consistently rebutting any Remain argument based on the 56% of people in Northern Ireland who voted for Remain over the last 4 years. Can't wait to read the outrage, come the Scottish elections this May 😈
  14. Serious answer: Neither. Any more loaded questions?
  15. And yet Germany was an ECSC member right from the start, then an EEC member state, all long before the UK...but that does not seem to have held back the German economy, industry, international trade, immigration, public healthcare, social housing, etc ever. How odd. Speaking of Germans, DB Schenker announced late this afternoon, that they are suspending all new freight orders to the UK. That is massive. They're about as big as DHL, at the European scale. I knew actual Brexit (the end of the WA period) was going to be bad. But not that bad and that quick, even with a 'no deal' outcome.
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