"I see Neil Kinnock has been pronounced a Welsh wizard because he is able to seize an opportunity and make it disappear."

Bob Monkhouse (1992)

Could that apply to anyone today?

@fitheach Also see this by Charlie Stross on twitter on how Brexit may now be a Eastern European verb. :-)

"Charlie Stross @cstross

I am informed that "brekzit" had become a verb in some eastern-European parts, meaning: saying goodbye to everyone as if you're about to leave, but then not actually leaving."

Ha ha. Good example of words travelling, and also how the meaning changes at the same time.

I suspect the UK will be leaving the EU. Maybe not on March 29th, but leaving none the less.

@fitheach I don't know. Apparently even if everyone votes the same way they did, or would have done had they been allowed, simply some people dying off and some people coming of age means the opinion of the electorate has already shifted to > 50% Remain.

That assumes another referendum. That is not going to happen. Not enough time to hold a referendum before March 29th. EU has already indicated that an extension to would have to end before Euro elections around May 23-25. Still not enough time for a referendum. Plus, Conservatives, Labour & DUP oppose 2nd EU referendum.

I accept *if* there was a 2nd EU referendum Remain could win.

@fitheach You said yourself maybe it's not happening on the day. If they can stall, they can stall again, and if they know the opinion is there, they may reconfirm it with a referendum. May never wanted a Brexit anyway, she just saw her chance at the rudder.

I said it is possible that Brexit won't happen on March 29th. For that to happen the EU27 must agree. Also, an extension would only be until at latest approx. May 23rd (EU elections). The UK cannot unilaterally stall. The UK can unilaterally revoke and completely cancel Brexit (unlikely as that is).

I've never fully accepted that May was a Remain supporter. The words reluctant & opportunistic come to mind. She hates EU immigration. Brexit is her last hope to be remembered.

@fitheach If UK is looking for a way to stall, my impression is that the EU will be accomodating, at least if it looks like they're on their way back in.

Don't think so. EU have stated, using diplomatic language, that reasons for Article50 extension would be to accommodate another referendum or a UK General Election happens. Even under either of those scenarios I suspect the May 23rd deadline would still apply.

TBH I suspect many EU politicians were fed-up with the UK prior to 2016. The last 2.5 years have extended that feeling, and many will be glad to see the back of the UK.

@fitheach As a Swede I want to keep the UK in the EU, precisely because they were always troublemakers. The EU needs them to keep the Commission and others on their toes. Sweden and the UK were often on the same side as freetraders and liberals against e.g. French protectionism and pork barrel politics.
@clacke @fitheach @sohkamyung At which point do we accept that the EU aren't going to change their ways, and that it would just be better to dissolve it rather trying to keep them in check? Although it seems more likely that some people here think the EU keeps the government here in check. I haven't really heard the argument you presented.
@sim @fitheach @sohkamyung How others would benefit from UK's participation isn't really an argument that flies in the UK, and it probably shouldn't anyway.

The EU does keep governments in check and that's sometimes one of the good things about it, but it needs to be kept in check so it doesn't keep them too much in check. 😀

Some people have said that if the UK leaves others are more likely to leave, but they have meant it like it's a mental barrier that would break or something like that.

I think the risk is that losing the UK means the EU centralizes too quickly, and therefore kills itself.
@sim @fitheach @sohkamyung

I know you and I disagree on this, but I think with all its warts, on the whole the EU has been good for the UK, for Sweden and for other member states. People blame a lot of stuff on it that isn't on the EU level, and politicians use the EU as an excuse to do stuff they know their voters won't like. Sweden is very much guilty of this, our implementations of EU directives often go far beyond what any other country does.
@clacke @fitheach @sohkamyung Yeah... I don't think we will agree when it comes to keeping the EU. I'd rather see it as a failed experiment and dissolve it. I'm not really sure there is a good reason for the UK to help keep it going. I don't think the whole creating a government to keep another government in check really works, it just enables more corruption while wasting a lot of resources and money... and it is harder to keep on top of everything happening. It's bad enough when dealing with one government!

I chose to say "politicians" quite specifically. People I know from the EU27 generally think "don't do it, don't go". Some people I don't know, also want the UK to stay:

However, there are many EU27 politicians that would like to see the UK depart, particularly those who want to hasten EU integration.

I boosted this a few days ago; list of stories carried by UK press and debunked by the EU:


> However, there are many EU27 politicians that would like to see the UK depart, particularly those who want to hasten EU integration.

Right. Otherwise I wouldn't be saying that the EU needs the UK. These are exactly the people that need a counterbalance.
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