It’s far from over, but the British people are clearly no more interested in the dire threats from Europe than the God-Emperor Ascendant is:
Just a few weeks after the Brexit vote, I was confronted by one of Britain’s most senior bankers at a social event stuffed with the nation’s business elite. The message was shrill: ‘This is a disaster. You have to help convince the Government we must stay in the single market.’
Now the banker, who has been patrolling the corridors of Whitehall with the same message ever since, has received a similarly robust response from the Prime Minister herself.
Britain will not remain part of the single market. It will not be seeking any off-the-shelf, Norway-style deals. Nor is it interested in a customs union — imposing standardised EU-wide import tariffs — which would limit its ability to forge independent trade deals with the world’s great economies.
Theresa May’s muscular bargaining position with Brussels has been immeasurably strengthened by two factors: the imminent arrival of Donald Trump in the White House; and the sparkling performance of the UK’s economy since June, which has defied all the ‘expert’ predictions of doom. A Trump presidency, we are now promised, will put Britain at the front of the queue for a trade deal — not at the back, as threatened by Barack Obama.
That is enormously significant because the U.S. is Britain’s biggest single trading partner, accounting for 20 per cent of our commerce with the rest of the world, and 6 per cent of the UK’s total output. Britain’s economy is showing a remarkable resilience in the face of Brexit beyond the wildest dreams of those who advocated that we should leave.
The economists and architects of the EU lied to get the nations of Europe into the EU. It shouldn’t be terribly surprising to discover that they will lie to try to keep them from leaving and reclaiming their national sovereignty. Indeed, the harder the Europeans argue, lie, and threaten, the more it becomes obvious to everyone across Europe that the Brits, and everyone else, will be better off out of the bankers’ corporatist state.