Video commentary on the threat of the UK walking out of the Brexit, negotiations, Tony Blair being awarded the Abraham Lincoln leadership prize and UKIP MEP Patrick O'Flynn telling the Remain campaign to be honest.
It is being reported that not only are the UK preparations for a no-deal Brexit far more advanced than many people realise, but also that UK ministers are tiring of EU stubbornness and are prepared to drop the talks.
Who'd have thought it? After weeks of EU intransigence and seeming weak responses from the UK negotiators and government, we now hear that ministers are preparing to leave the negotiating table, if Eurocrats insist on playing hard-ball.
"A senior cabinet source has revealed that plans for scenarios including no deal and the EU refusing to let Britain rejoin its agencies are more advanced than many people realise." Reports the Express.
The paper also says that a minister told them that:
"We have taken a polite approach and tried to be as reasonable as possible so far but in the end we have the means to compete and outdo the EU.
“After all we are the world’s fifth largest economy, speak the language of business, have great universities and the rest of it.
“We are in the perfect place to be at the beginning of the fourth industrial age and actually leaving the EU at the perfect time."
The unnamed Express source went on to say that it would have been nice to be more upfront and shout loudly about it, but that the diplomatic and reasonable approach had to be taken first.
The big message coming from the minister here is that the strategy is:
“….we will do things better than the EU and compete with them.
"So for example if they do not let us join their agencies we are ready to set up our own but make them better and turn them into the international standard. That won’t be difficult.”
And this is backed up by Boris Johnson saying that the government is ready to walk away from the talks if necessary.
"Boris Johnson has said a “no deal” Brexit should not hold any “terrors” for Britain because the country would “do very well” under World Trade Organisation rules." Reports the Telegraph, going on to say that the Foreign Minster stated that no-deal preparations are continuing and that it remained an option.
Now this is the type of positive action and attitude that the UK needs right now, so let's hope we hear much more of it in the coming months!
Now here's a piece of news that will be leaving many people spitting feathers!
It turns out that the latest recipient of the Abraham Lincoln 'Leadership Prize' is one Tony Blair, who becomes the first Briton to hold it.
This US prize is awarded to those that show:
"Great strength of character, individual conscience and unwavering commitment to the defining principles of democracy."
I'll let you be the judge of that one where trying to reverse the Brexit will of the people is concerned, but here are some responses by others:
Conservative MP Nigel Evan said: “Tony Blair is not a democrat. He has spent a lot of time advising countries which are total strangers to democracy.”
Tory MP and Brexiteer Iain Duncan Smith asked: “Where was the award from, Kazakhstan?”
Another Tory MP, Nadine Dorries said: “It is beyond belief that Tony Blair – the man straining every sinew to overturn the votes of millions of people to leave the EU – is now being lauded for his commitment to democracy. I think the Americans should have taken a closer look at his record.”
The award says that Tony Blair's work on the Northern Ireland peace process was a factor, but the DUP boss Arlene Foster, said that his recent attempts to use the Irish border question as a bargaining chip and stoking fears into the process, were an insult to the people of Northern Ireland.
And finally, writing in Brexit Central, UKIP MEP Patrick O’Flynn says that the Remain camp must now be honest and campaign for the truth of the EU, that to be in the European Union, means to entering EU serfdom.
Remainers should also, he says, stop wheeling out wrinkly dinosaurs the likes of the aforementioned Tony Blair, John Major, Peter Mandelson, Michael Heseltine, Nick Clegg and Ken Clarke, supplemented by more junior figures such as Anna Soubry and Nicky Morgan.
And as I have said in the past, Patrick O'Flynn says they should now look at themselves as either 'Returners' or 'Rejoiners' as the Remain game is now just about finished.
He goes on to say that instead of trampling on democracy like Ted Heath did, those that wish the UK to be inside the EU:
"…should be honest that the idea of this organisation being principally about trade was untrue and openly make the case for the UK to be absorbed into the emerging European state."
The trouble is of course only a very few on the EUphile side would ever make that case, as they are fully aware that it would destroy any remaining support base they have amongst ordinary voters, almost entirely. So fat chance of honesty there.