Mike Vickers' Blog

September 10, 2019

Doesn’t Northern Ireland have an Anthem

Filed under: Bercow, Boris, Brexit, Europe, Good Friday Agreement, Ireland, Theresa may, Westminster — derryvickers @ 6:37 am

“While Bercow completed the formalities required to prorogue parliament in the House of Lords, opposition MPs sung songs, including the Red Flag, Jerusalem, Scots Wha Hae and Bread of Heaven (in Welsh, with harmonies).”

Doesn’t Northen Ireland have a national song or are their MPs totally on the Tory side.

Paul Waugh sums up Johnson:

“Even more than Theresa May ever was, Johnson is a now zombie PM in a zombie parliament. Unlike her, his answer is to shut down the graveyard (the Commons and Lords). Yet like May, he thinks he can get a new lease of life through a general election. Let’s see if the script is more The Walking Dead than Carry on Screaming.”

April 30, 2019

An Alliance Made in Heaven?

Filed under: Brexit, Europe, Jeremy Corbyn, Theresa may — derryvickers @ 9:04 am

Well perhaps not!

A Heavenly Alliance

April 26, 2019

The Good Friday Agreement resurrected – we can only hope on this Friday one week on

The British and Irish governments have reached an agreement to establish a new round of talks involving all the main political parties in Northern Ireland, starting on 7 May.

Theresa May and the taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, credited the public response to the killing of Lyra McKee with the announcement on Friday of a fresh attempt to restore power sharing in Northern Ireland.

But see the small print

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/apr/26/northern-ireland-fresh-attempt-to-restore-power-sharing

There’s a Hole in my Bucket Dear Theresa

Filed under: Brexit, Politics, Security, Theresa may — derryvickers @ 10:46 am

“The Huawei 5G row took a very serious turn yesterday after Cabinet Secretary Sir Mark Sedwill (pictured above) wrote to all ministers, special advisers and officials to demand answers on who was responsible for the leak. In what looks like the inverse of Murder on the Orient Express – “none of us did it!” – all those Cabinet ministers who were said to have raised concerns at the Chinese firm’s role (Williamson, Javid, Hunt, Fox, Mordaunt) have now put out categoric denials that they were responsible for the breach of confidence.”

“One Tory MP told me the UK’s industrial strategy should now focus on how to help Huawei’s rivals like Nokia.”

Read Paul Waugh at PAUL WAUGH <dailybrief@huffpost.com> for 26 April 2019

April 3, 2019

May to work with Corbyn – after 2 years

Filed under: Brexit, Jeremy Corbyn, Politics, Theresa may — derryvickers @ 9:47 am

Two contrasting views of the same eventful day 02/04/19

Paul Waugh in Huffington Post

https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/theresa-may-finally-tries-to-break-free-of-her-brexiteer-prison-but-will-jeremy-corbyn-help-her-escape_uk_5ca3df58e4b0ed0d780dfd4d?95d&ncid=newsletter-ukThe%20Waugh%20Zone%20030419&utm_campaign=newsletter-The%20Waugh%20Zone%20030419&guccounter=1

and John Crace in the Guardian

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/series/the-politics-sketch

Both say in their individual styles that May is running a serious risk in finishing the Tory Party by inviting Corbyn to assist and Corbyn will be taking a serious risk that the Labour heartland will abandon them.

If the outcome is a joint recommendation to vote on a soft Brexit it could be worth it as a stay of exit from the EU for another 18 months but no more. But I do have my doubts that May and Corbyn are anything of the calibre of Churchill and Atlee.

I can only hope that the Bill before the UK Parliament today tabled by Yvette Cooper and Oliver Letwin to prevent the UK leaving the EU without an agreement is successful.  A real Stake in the Ground.

March 28, 2019

Italy On the Frontiers of Europe

Filed under: Brexit, Europe, Immigration, Politics, Theresa may, UK Parliament — derryvickers @ 9:34 am

I cannot support Salvini’s action and his sarcasm, to me, is ‘unfortunate’.

Corriere della Sera and Italian news agencies reported that 108 people were picked up by the tanker Elhiblu 1, and hijacked the vessel when it became clear that it planned to take them back to Libya.

Six nautical miles from Tripoli it suddenly changed course and headed north towards Europe. Migrants in Libya face trafficking, kidnap, torture and rape, according to the United Nations and aid groups.

“These are not migrants in distress, they are pirates, they will only see Italy through a telescope,” said Italy’s far-right deputy PM, Matteo Salvini, who has cracked down on migrants, including closing Italy’s ports to NGO rescue boats, since he took office in June last year.

Salvini said that Italy’s ports would remain close. “Poor castaways, who hijack a merchant ship that saved them because they want to decide the route of the cruise,” he said with sarcasm, according to the Ansa press agency.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/mar/27/rescued-migrants-hijack-merchant-ship-off-libya

There has to be extenuating circumstances for ‘hijacking’ and I see this action is one such.

Nevertheless, the EU must come together and work as a whole, on immigrant entry to Europe. Italy and Greece are on the Frontiers of Europe.

And I despise Theresa May, in particular, for her specific action of rejection of all immigrants coming through Europe to the UK for unaccompanied children.

March 22, 2019

Need for a Government of National Unity

Filed under: Brexit, Europe, Italian, Personal, Politics, Theresa may — derryvickers @ 12:11 am

I was fool enough to switch to Corriere della Sera late this evening and found the EU was in fighting mode; so I opened the Guardian and found a long article on what the EU Leaders had decided.  This was followed by what was going on ‘Back in the Ranch’.

The full article

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/mar/21/mays-appeal-falls-flat-as-eu-seizes-control-of-brexit-date

We need a Government of National Unity as with WW2

Here are my experts in my Heat of the Moment

EU leaders moved to seize control of Britain’s exit date from the bloc after an unconvincing appeal by Theresa May on Thursday for a three-month Brexit delay.

In an address to the leaders described by one source as “90 minutes of nothing”, the prime minister failed to persuade leaders that she had a plan to avoid a no-deal Brexit.

….

But her appeal “dismally” failed to offer any answers as to what she would do if the deal was blocked by MPs again, sources said, provoking EU leaders into taking matters into their own hands and in effect taking control of her future.

“She didn’t even give clarity if she is organising a vote,” said one aide to a leader. “Asked three times what she would do if she lost the vote, she couldn’t say. It was awful. Dreadful. Evasive even by her standards.”

…..

It was then that the EU decided that “she didn’t have a plan so they needed to come up with one for her”, the source added.

With May out of the room, EU leaders delayed their plans to discuss relations with China and launched into a marathon late night session in Brussels.

…….

But if the withdrawal agreement failed to pass the Commons by 12 April, the UK could then request a long extension. “If the withdrawal agreement is not approved by the House of Commons next week, the European council agrees to an extension until 12 April, and expects UK to indicate a way forward for the consideration of the European council,” a draft summit communique said.

“What this model is designed for is to make it clear that no deal is the not the EU’s choice, it is the UK’s choice,” a diplomatic source said.

………………

The EU had initially looked at solely offering an extension up until 22 May, the day before European elections would be held, on the condition May had her deal pass next week at the third time of asking.

But such was the lack confidence in the prime minister following her latest performance that the EU’s member states acted in their own interest to shore up against a no deal Brexit and allow the British parliament to take control.

Back in the UK >>>>>>>

MPs, including many of those whom the Tory whips were hoping to win over before a prospective third meaningful vote next week, reacted angrily to May’s claims that they were blocking the people’s will

…………..

Does the Leader of the House agree with the prime minister’s statement last night, in which she pitted MPs against the general public?”

Leadsom appeared to distance herself from the prime minister’s words: “MPs need to be treated with respect and given the opportunity to represent their constituents and their country in alignment with their own beliefs and with doing the best they can possibly do.”

………………..

In a rare joint letter, TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady and the CBI’s Carolyn Fairbairn described the situation as a “national emergency”, and called on the prime minister to seek a plan B.

“The current deal and no deal must not be the only choice,” they warned, demanding a meeting with May to discuss the next steps.

Finally

Liz Truss, the chief secretary to the treasury, became the latest cabinet minister to argue openly on Thursday that a no-deal Brexit would be preferable to a long delay.

Truss must be Mad

March 21, 2019

Two Prime Ministers: well one and one a spoiled brat

Filed under: Brexit, Immigration, Jacinda Arden, Politics, Theresa may, Trump — derryvickers @ 9:57 am

Jacinda Arden addressing the New Zealand Parliament: Thoughtful, Inspiring, Compassionate

https://video.search.yahoo.com/yhs/search;_ylt=AwrC3O.XXpNce0gA8TQPxQt.;_ylu=X3oDMTByMjB0aG5zBGNvbG8DYmYxBHBvcwMxBHZ0aWQDBHNlYwNzYw–?p=Jacinda+Arden+addressing+New+Zealand+Parliament&fr=yhs-adk-adk_sbnt&hspart=adk&hsimp=yhs-adk_sbnt#id=2&vid=9f43eeaae82eb40d6ffa95528fb0e59d&action=view

Theresa May: Testy, Preaching, throwing her toys out of the pram as a spoiled child.

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/mar/20/acting-like-trump-theresa-may-sparks-mps-brexit-fury

New Zealand has welcomed all; the UK used to, but under May immigrants are anathema.

March 13, 2019

No Deal – well let’s hope so

Filed under: Brexit, Europe, Politics, Theresa may — derryvickers @ 11:23 pm

This evenings vote on ‘No Deal’ is too close for comfort and getting closer.
There is much manoeuvring in the Tory / DUP ranks.

Martin Kettle in the Guardian is also sanguine on the situation: he believes May is not dead yet. If no delay and now no No Deal then a third time May may succeed.

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/mar/13/theresa-may-deal-vote-mps-brexit

He considers that Hammond did a Bismarck this evening

“Nevertheless, Hammond seized his chance, giving a foretaste of the power shift inside the government that was to come in the evening votes. Chancellors get only two moments in the limelight during the year. Hammond knows he may not still be in the job by the autumn. So, he was not going to let this one slip. Brexit dominated the beginning, middle and end of his statement. Just before he sat down, Hammond summoned up his inner Bismarck. It was time, he said, “to start to map out a way forward towards building a consensus across this house for a deal we collectively support to exit the EU in an orderly way”.

“This may not sound ringing stuff. Yet in terms of the conventions of cabinet collective responsibility on central issues of policy, it was practically a call to storm the Winter Palace.”

We shall see what the vote is tomorrow.
There is also a touch of the New Testament in Kettle’s article:

‘Before the cock crow thou shall deny me thrice.’

Brother can you spare a dime

Filed under: Brexit, Europe, Immigration, Italian, Politics, Theresa may — derryvickers @ 4:49 pm

Marina Hyde earlier today in the Guardian: 13 March 2019

“Fairly sure the world has got the message by now. They are “up to speed” and “across the detail” of the sort of country the UK is. The question of whether Brexit represented a midlife crisis or the descent into senility appears to have been answered. The land that likes to picture itself as a David Niven world war two movie is in fact a look-away episode of The Jeremy Kyle Show. On close inspection, the “beacon of democracy” turns out to be a bin fire.”

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/mar/13/theresa-may-deal-europe-eu-mps

I used to find it reassuring that the MPs in Westminster were coming around to my view. But I find Marina Hyde’s article now infinitely depressing.
“Once we had an Empire, now it’s gone, brother can you spare a dime”.

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