It is Obvious

Chris Rick has got altogether too much to say

Archive for December, 2017

Oh dear

Posted by chrisrick13 on December 8, 2017

It is obvious: this is easy

I will continue to moan that if you play poker with your cards face up on the table do not expect a good result.

The UK Brexit negotiators (sic) have to tell everyone what they are doing and place their cards face up.  That includes telling the EU negotiators.  It seems that every interest group in the UK is trying to get the UK negotiators to follow their particular niche requirements.  In short it is a mess.

However there is a very simple way out of this.

In my reading on negotiating I discovered the story where Golda Meir and Yasser Arafat were walking in the gardens together between negotiating sessions on…something.  Meir said to Arafat of his latest outrageous demand: if I agree to your demands and take them to parliament I will not last another 5 minutes as PM or leader of my party and they will reject your demands.  Give me something I can fight for that they will at least consider.  Arafat saw the logic and put forward something that she did take to the parliament and parliament accepted it.  I wished I could say that the rest was history but the Israel/Palestine conflict will be many more years before it is a part of history.

This is the model for the UK.  The UK government says to the rest of the UK that they are going to negotiate in secret.  It will release as much information as possible that does not prejudice the UK negotiating position as it goes along.  Parliament will see the deal at the end and vote on it after a long debate.

Mr Davies says to Mr Barnier: we’ll agree to just about anything you want.  Remember though that there are 630 MPS going to vote on this.  You be the judge on what you demand actually making it into an agreement that the UK will sign up to.

In this way the EU is suddenly negotiating with themselves.  They have to think about what UK public opinion and thereby the MPs will think of anything they propose.

We could probably walk away and leave it up to the EU to sort it all out.

You might not think that it is much of a negotiating tactic (it is).  If you are in doubt then note that today Mr Barnier said that he was happy with the recent concession by the UK (for that is what it was) but he had to put it to the council of ministers!!!!  They are already doing it to us!

(Technically, this is a variant on the higher-authority gambit.)

I’m standing a long way from where it is happening but from here it looks like we are screwing this negotiation up badly.  My biggest hope is that there is no agreement and we let all the systems sort themselves out and arrive at their own equilibrium after the so-called hard Brexit.

Indeed in true 1984 fashion I think that the hard Brexit is actually the easy one…and the best one.

In medieval times there was a lot of torture…actually, I suspect that the levels are the same in the present day.  We have all seen dungeons and torture chambers if only in film.  They were seldom used.  Before the real torture the prisoner was ‘shown the instruments’.  Usually enough to get all the information they wanted.  The imagination was stronger than the reality.  I see many people showing themselves (and us) the instruments.  They have no idea.  Leading the way on those already proven to have no idea is the BoE with its prediction of an immediate rise in interest rates post the vote.  The treasury is up there with its prediction of an immediate reduction in GDP.  Stop showing yourselves the instruments!

We existed as a sovereign nation for many years before the EU and will after we leave.  As it is approaching the new year and a time for predictions I will add that the UK (or all the bits of it) will be in existence long after the EU has gone.  Hurry up and get the negotiations done so that there is still an EU in existence for us to leave.

It is obvious: this is easy – isn’t it?

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