Those Tory MPs opposed to the so-called “Chequers compromise”, and indeed to any compromise when it comes to negotiating with the EU on the terms of Britain’s departure, whenever it comes, have a number of figureheads claiming to speak for all of them. One of those is the representative for Wycombe, Steve Baker, former alumnus of the Young Britons’ Foundation, and indeed recipient of the coveted Golden Dolphin award.
This award, which was the personal choice of the now-moribund entryist organisation’s head man Donal Blaney, came with the citation “Steve Baker MP, for being proud to stand as a libertarian and as a Christian when the prevailing winds might favour a weaker, less principled course”. But his current course may not be good for, you know, the UK.
Consider what Baker has decided is worth cascading to his Twitter followers: in late July, it was a David Collins article on Brexit Central. In August, he commended the work of the IEA, telling “We need more impartiality and objectivity in this debate and you are bringing it. Great job”. The IEA brings neither impartiality, nor objectivity: it is yet another of those Government-demonising lobby groups, along with the TPA, CPS and ASI.
Early this month, Baker was commending another piece on Brexit Central, this time by Greg Hands. Then came more applause for Hands (geddit?!?!?) as he proclaimed “the Swiss option is not on the table and it’s not going to be”. Brexit Central cited once more, along with the thoughts of Dan, Dan The Oratory Man. Hannan has mostly been wrong in both direction and detail in his arguments over Brexit.
Last weekend, it was “Flirting with EEA-EFTA? You don’t need Brexiteers to say it’s the wrong option for the UK” Greg Hands again. Brexit Central again. And then came “Essential from @BorisJohnson”, which is a contradiction in terms. Nothing from Bozza is essential, other than for the promotion of Himself Personally Now.
Brexit Central is the site run by one Jonathan Isaby, who was humiliatingly handed his arse by Jason Hunter, a former trade negotiator, in a discussion on Radio Kent last month. Isaby, formerly at Conservative Home and the so-called Taxpayers’ Alliance, did not know what he was talking about when it came to trade, and specifically the role of the WTO.
Hunter has tried his best to wake the likes of Baker and his pals from their comfortable slumber, telling the other day “Have you noticed that there is not a scrap of evidence in existence that "everything will be fine when we leave the EU"? Not a scrap anywhere. And yet that's all we hear from UK Government. There is no sense of urgency or even realisation that under Article 50 ALL OUR TREATIES CEASE. That means they all stop folks. All of them. There isn't time to renegotiate them all before 29/3/19 and there is NO PLAN for keeping the UK operating post Brexit”.
But Steve Baker is not discussing trade with the likes of Hunter, who knows his subject, nor with James O’Brien, who noted today “The evolution from ‘Project Fear’ to ‘You lost, get over it’ to ‘Please stop pointing out how bad it all is’ seems close to complete”. He is, instead, listening to his own pals in their monetarily insulated echo chamber.
That’s not good enough. Let’s see Baker, Hannan, Hands and the rest pit their alleged knowledge against those who know their subject. It’ll be a long wait, mind.
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