Tag Archives: Brexit

Balancing on Brexit tightrope by Thanos Kalamidas

If London mayorship and a term at the foreign office can be a blue print for what is coming then British people will really miss “strong and stable” Theresa May.

Boris Johnson, the new British Prime Minister, a well-known populist and internationally diplomat goofy while a huge question mark. Nobody really knows what Boris, the Prime Minister, will bring into Downing Street and nobody knows how strong and especially how stable his prime-ministry will be. Still, he is the Brexiteers last hope.

boris001_400_01Boris Johnson, in spite of former PR performances while London’s mayor, is literally balancing on a tightrope and this has not only to do with the deadlock situation in the negotiations with EU but mainly with the things the former foreign secretary has promised in the past, he has said in the past and has often confusingly radically change the last three years.

His latest promise and most likely the one that elected him to the prime minister’s seat is that Brexit will end by the end of October with or without an agreement. Pointing that he means an agreement he likes not the one May compromised with. While giving this promise willingly or not, Boris Johnson voluntarily put a possible expiring day to his prime-ministry.

Despite all the problems Britain is facing at the moment, Boris was elected by the conservative party to end Brexit as soon as possible with the less possible damage for the British interests. Period. The rest of the problems are postponed for after Brexit which shows how little the Tories understand the situation and how little they comprehend the vice-versa relationship between the general economic situation and the outcome of a no-deal Brexit. Actually it is the general financial situation that makes a no-deal Brexit nightmarish difficult.

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The Greek Express #96 – Brexit by Thanos Raftopoulos

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Anybody out there, Brexiteers? by Thanos Kalamidas

You think, no big thing; things might change a bit for the exporting companies and some goods in the supermarkets might be a bit more expensive but most of the people don’t live on champagne and roquefort cheese. After all UK is the ninth largest economy in the world; everybody is going to be fine!

And then you get your bank statement posted from Germany, from your bank’s “European head office” in Berlin and you think …wow! Brexit is here, my bank knows it and I have no idea what’s really going on and how much this is going to shape my life. Do I need visa and work permit now to live in my house with my family? Do I need …what do I need? Does anybody have any idea what do I need? Theresa? Boris? Anybody?

brex001_400Nobody. Literally nobody while nearly 2.5 million UK nationals living in EU realized day after day that their future is somewhere between: we are pawns in a game we don’t understand and Boris changes the rules in daily base and we are screwed suddenly becoming second category unwelcome immigrants. Just like the ones UK likes to avoid wants to kick out and used as escuse for the Brexit. The irony of contemporary life.

But hey, don’t worry; Trump wants talks for a ‘cutting edge’ free trade deal with the UK to start immediately after Brexit. That should make me feel better. NO! It does NOT. British people don’t want Trump’s modified potatoes and carrots or any other artificial food and drink. They don’t want to buy his guns, planes and missiles and definitely no more hotel and golf clubs from him.

Boris keeps saying how badly May is failing and how poor her Chequers proposal is but he is coming rather short to any kind of proposals himself. Two years since the beginning of the negotiations except saying how bad job Theresa is doing, Mr Johnson hasn’t offer a single suggestion on how she should act and what to say.

Did I mention Jacob Rees-Mogg? Sorry my mistake. The British Donald Trump with a little of Farage and Disney’s Goofy; in total: three catastrophes in one body. His public contribution to any conversation about Brexit is even smaller than Michael Gove’s or Joan Collins’, another glorious Brexiteer. At least her excuse is that she likes …Trump and Trump is against EU.

In the meantime I rechecked the bank’s statement. Head office. Germany. WOW! Imagine that. The ninth largest economy supporting the fourth largest economy, all for the glory of a Brexit.

But at least there will be open borders with the Irish republic. Because …because it is part of the empire and Queen Theresa wishes so. So, no worries, nobody is going to miss champagne and roquefort cheese, they will be coming from Dublin.Last minutes denial or we don’t know what the hell we are saying? And, what about the 2.5 million UK nationals living in EU? Well this is Juncker’s problem, you might say. He can make a law and help them if he wants or kick them out of EU which will make him the evil bastard he is.

What about the 2.7 million EU citizens living in UK? No worries there, no worries at all. UK legally will keep the British educated, well professional established, basicaly not east europeans, with good work experience, in needed positions with low salaries and the rest will become tourists or …illegal immigrants. UK is not going to be blackmailed for its 2.5 million UK nationals living in EU because it has 2.7 million EU citizens living in UK for hostages.

What did I say in the beginning? Either pawns in a game we don’t understand or Boris changes the rules in daily base or plainly screwed with the second case winning every single moment UK reaches a no deal Brexit.

No deal Brexit, this seems to be the only way and you know why? Because they have absolutely no idea what to do. Both sides. UK and EU. In UK things are a bit worst because even those who fought for Brexit didn’t believe that it would happen so there was no plan for the day after. And now we are in the day after after after with no plan and 2.5 million UK nationals living in EU while 2.7 million EU citizens living in UK. In total 5.2 million people live in limbo! A country the population size of Norway or Ireland.

But hey, no worries; the banks have created European head offices in Berlin! The ninth largest economy is moving to Berlin while Boris, Jacob and Theresa argue who’s the toughest!

And I’m really worrying!

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The 5 stages of Brexit: Denial-Denial-Denial-Denial-Denial by Thanos Kalamidas

What’s wrong with May and Brexiteers’ policies towards Brexit? Denial for sure and the fact that they think that they play chicken with Brussels. To make it worst while the EU member states had two years to prepare themselves and Union’s economy for the unavoidable, UK was still trying to figure out if and what will be the consequences from the Brexit, often beleiveing that they are …invisible. Sadly, months before the final day reality haven’t reached them yet. They still …play.

The whole situation reminds something we have already lived in Europe three years ago with Greece in the role of the protagonist. Creative calculations, accounting and a lot of imagination had made the Greek government and especially the then finance minister, Yanis Varoufakis, (an academic theorist of the economic game-theory) to believe that the rconomic losses EU was facing in front of a Greek bankruptcy were going to be so dramaticaly damaging that the eurozone would actually cut the debt into half and free Greece from the prospect of the torturous memorandums.

may01_400That was the theory behind the chicken game Greeks tried to play back then and it started in February 2015. By May 2015, just three months later, all the EU states and their banking systems were fully prepared for a Greek bankruptcy. Actually the entire banking universe was prepared for a Greek bankruptcy, except the …Greek government.

By the end of July 2015 Greece was deep in the memorandums with the banks in capital controls and the Greek people marching in mass to poverty. The Greek state didn’t bankrupt but the Greek government did and normality will never return to Greece; in fact the Greek people since then have learned to live in a new reality nobody envies.

But UK is not Greece, you might say, from every single angle you might look at it. Might have fallen into the ninth place in the world’s largest economies; but still there, on the top ten. And in theory this is good news if your competition didn’t come from the tenth which is an EU member state in the verges of bankruptcy due to foreign debt followed by the Brazilian economy with the known complicated political problems due to constant corruption. Strange company and far away from the top eight.

However still on the top ten; an industrial country with huge exports and a huge – somehow private – market to consume British goods, the Commonwealth of Nations. Although some of the member started having their own market power reaching for their own consumers far away from UK’s Commonwealth like India, South Africa or Nigeria. Oddly some of them like Canada and Pakistan make independently their own deals with EU far away from the British …influence. And these are just sings that the prospects from theory to practice might be a little …distant.

Theresa May, with or without the cycle of the Brexiteers like Boris Johnson, started the negotiations projecting the idea and the attitude that UK is a superpower empowered from the illusion that the spirit of the old British Empire was still alive. It is dead, they went to the funeral long time ago but sadly they still don’t believe it. And that’s another brick in the wall Theresa and her colleagues Brexiteers have built with EU. Actually that makes in a weird way funny a complain she expressed after the Salzburg summit, that the EU does not …respect Britain. Oddly she did all these complains after her return to London, obviously it was all a show for the tabloids and nothing more. Theresa knows that there is no success story in Brexit and she just tries to survive the mess.

Bottom line, while EU went through all the five stages of grief: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance in one year and bit, having plenty of time to spare, UK got stuck with denial and months before the end they are still there.

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Chilcot May have saved Corbyn and stopped Brexit by Thanos Kalamidas

ovicover_07_07_16The say that when it comes to bad news they have the tendency to come all together and for Britain July 6th was another day with more bad news. Well not for everybody. Chairman Sir John Chilcot delivered the results of UK’s Iraq War inquiry concluding that: the invasion was not the “last resort” action presented to MPs and the public. There was no “imminent threat” from Saddam, and that Tony Blair overstated the threat posed by Saddam Hussein, sent ill-prepared troops into battle and had “wholly inadequate” plans for the aftermath.

In other words, Tony Blair lied and screwed up big, criminally, globally, consequencing the death of hundreds of thousands. The man has blood on his hands and he will pay for that. Tony Blair was not alone when he lied and cheated, he had accomplices and I don’t mean this reptile spin-doctor Alistair Campbell, only. He had all this bunch of cronies in the Labour Party going under the New Labour brand. And most of them – minor Gordon Brown – are still here. Trying to force policies and agendas.

Jeremy Corbyn did a lot of mistakes during the Brexit-Remain campaign, his main one was that he was not into it. The man didn’t inspire much of remain and after the result there were many – inside and outside the Labour Party – that would have bet that he didn’t even vote for remain himself. He restricted himself into cliché announces and speeches leaving the field for the Tories. After all, it was them who had turned the whole thing into an internal conflict, Boris Vis David. Why not make the best of it after the humiliating defeat in 2015 general elections?

Read the whole article in Ovi Magazine, HERE!

 

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