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Brexit And The Money Issue

Posted on 16th October 2017

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Two recent reports about Brexit highlight the hypocrisy, lies, broken promises and arrogance of the UK's conservative government.

This piece by the BBC reports Theresa May as saying "where money needs to be spent it will be spent". I find this very strange, given that saving the UK taxpayer money was one of the justifications used by pro-Brexiters during the Brexit referendum campaign; all that nonsense about £350M a week extra for the NHS (National Health Service) after Brexit.

The real facts of the matter are that there will be lots of costs from leaving the EU: the "divorce" bill, the extra costs of customs and immigration controls (especially in relation to Ireland), the bureaucratic costs of repealing EU specific legislation and of replacing it with UK legislation, additional bureaucratic costs for business importing from and exporting to the EU, bureaucratic costs for government in processing VAT and import duties for trade with the EU, costs (e.g. health insurance) for Brits who travel to the EU for work or vacation, and many many more costs.

This piece, also by the BBC, gives a summary of a recent opinion poll, which shows that people (at least people in Wales) are not willing to lose any money as a result of Brexit. The same is probably true of most of the UK populace.

So, the government is prepared to pay whatever it takes to leave the EU, but the citizens are not. Good luck squaring that circle!

How many ways, and how many times, does the government need to be told that the terms that are being discussed for Brexit are not acceptable to the voting public? Whatever the reasons of principle for leaving the EU (themselves questionable at best), they do not justify the approach of Brexit at any cost. People were asked to vote in a referendum on the basis that Brexit would save them money, and given the facts that are now on the table, their decision is now clearly invalid. The people do not want Brexit at any cost, and it is time that the government listened.