|Michel Bernard Barnier|
It's strange really: the EU political machine was supposed to have loved the UK before Brexit (just over a year ago). Now it seems to hate it. Yet the UK is still the same country. Strange.
The latest threat from an EU big knob comes from Michel Bernard Barnier. He's the European Commission’s Chief Negotiator. He warned us that it'll be impossible for the UK to have “frictionless” trade with the EU. Of course this threat was put in a roundabout way – though it wasn't that roundabout. Barnier said that the UK won't be able to continue to enjoy the benefits of the single market.
It was only just over a week ago that EU Commissioner Günther Hermann Oettinger moaned:
“The Brexit gap will be financed by a mix of cuts, shifting expenditure, saving, and some new sources of money.”
The threat here is that the EU may force the UK to pay a 100 billion euro fee for daring to leave it.
In other words, the UK will be punished for Brexit. And like Oettinger, Barnier tacitly admits that the EU will loose too. It will be, in his own words, a “loser-loser situation”. However, there's much evidence to suggest that the EU will suffer far more than thus UK.
The fact is that these EU threats and the EU itself were never about “mutual trade”. They were about EU control over that mutual trade. As Mr Barnier said:
“I have heard some people in the UK argue that one can leave the single market and keep all of its benefits and that one can leave the single market and build a customs union to achieve frictionless trade. That is not possible.”
To all that, a British government spokesman replied:
“Obviously we are just at the beginning of the negotiations but I would say that the most frictionless possible trade between the UK and the EU is clearly in the interests of both sides.”
Yet if the EU isn't really about trade alone, then these EU big knobs won't really want deals which are of benefit to both the UK and the EU. They'll want to keep control of the UK or to punish it.
The political institution that is the EU wants political power over European economies. That's why the EU isn't happy with Theresa May saying that Britain is still planning to trade - and do business - with Europe. As I said, it was never all about trade and business. The EU is about politics and the political control of European trade and business.
Chief Negotiator Michel Bernard Barnier has of course focused on the fact that there'll be problems when the UK leaves the EU. Of course there'll be problems! There'll be problems with remaining in the EU too. Barnier cites the examples of additional red tape for UK exporters; as well as new border checks for the export of live animals. In addition, he mentioned the problems that Airbus (in north Wales) could face in moving parts and staff between its European sites.
Liam Fox (the International Trade Secretary) has just said that the BBC would rather see “Britain fail than [see] Brexit succeed”. Yet this can be said of the EU itself: The EU would rather see Britain fail than Brexit succeed. And just as communists and Trotskyists have always wanted "capitalist countries" to fail in order to bring about the conditions required to bring about a revolution (“the worse it is, the better it is”), so the BBC and the EU want Brexit to fail in order to bring about a stronger case for another referendum. The BBC and Remainers are as much against Brexit as communists/Trotskyists are against Britain itself.
The BBC is like Barnier and other EU commissars, at least according to Liam Fox. He claims that the BBC is out to ruin Brexit and even ruin Britain in the process. Fox said that he couldn't
“recall a single time recently when I have seen good economic news the BBC didn’t describe as 'despite Brexit'”.