The weird and wacky parallel universe inhabited by the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog has seen some remarkably foolish ideas floated over the years, but few have come close to the suggestion that Ireland may be on the brink of leaving the EU because of the result of the UK referendum. But Staines, who holds Irish nationality, is apparently convinced that it’s going to happen.
To this end, the Fawkes blog has today brought forth a particularly pungent and indeed steaming missive telling readers “EU Ruling Against Ireland Will Boost Chances Of Irexit … EU About To Boost Irexit Prospects Massively”. So what grounds does The Great Guido have for backing the Irexit Massive? “The European Commission is expected to levy a judgment against Apple soon that could total in the billions of euros”.
So that’s it, is it? “This is as a result of Apple domiciling in Ireland and benefiting from its competitive tax regime. Essentially the Commission is seeking to undermine Ireland’s low tax policy which attracts multi-nationals to the Western periphery of Europe”. Except for the ones that are attracted to Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Spain, Portugal and, well, many other EU member states. But do go on.
“Ireland’s EU burden share will increase post-Brexit as the EU loses the second biggest net-contributor. This will change the debate, particularly as Dublin watches Ireland’s biggest trading partner Britain continue to thrive outside the EU”. Britain, as Staines ought to know, has not left the EU yet. Moreover, he might live in Ireland, but, in the words of the old Ford Fiesta advert, he needs to get out more.
Support for remaining within the EU in Ireland is the thing that is massive, as the Irish Times told only last month: “Support for remaining a member of the EU closely mirrored views on the British decision to leave. Less than one in 10 voters (9 per cent) are in favour of following Britain out of the union, while a whopping majority (86 per cent) believe Ireland should stay in. Five per cent say they don’t know”. 86% for remaining.
Well, how about having a referendum on Ireland’s membership of the EU? Wouldn’t that be a good idea? The Journal, after telling its readers “A new campaign group calling itself Ireland Exit has launched an official campaign for a referendum on Ireland’s EU membership … The centre-leaning group says it believes ‘the time is right’ for such a referendum”, asked its readers what they thought. So, “Should Ireland hold a referendum on leaving the EU?” Result - 68% said No. No to even having a vote.
And it gets worse for the Fawkes rabble: a few days after the UK result was announced, Irish Central declared “Massive support for a united Ireland poll after Brexit”. Northern Ireland voted to Remain in the EU. After reminding readers that “The 1998 Good Friday agreement has a provision for such a vote”, the question was asked, and the answer was emphatic: “Out of the 3,381 of you who voted in the poll, 88% believe that now is the time for a border vote on a united Ireland”. The Great Guido is totally out of touch.
Something for Staines to consider over his chorizo burger and bottle of Chablis this lunchtime. Yes, for this Man Of The People, it’s yet Another Fine Mess, once again.