More recently, Pierce has found himself useful to his paper in another regard: the Mail is rabidly anti-EU, and by happy coincidence, so is he. He can therefore be relied upon to be supportive of the editorial line, and excuse the customary welter of abuse handed out to any politician who does not speak English as a first language.
The flip side of that is Pierce’s unerring ability to talk up anything that might be seen as a positive effect of Brexit. So it was that he told his adoring followers in October 2017 “Dutch firm TMF is to move its HQ from Amsterdam to London after £1bn float on Stock Exchange. Another boost for Brexit”. Sadly, it was not a boost for Brexit.
One Tweeter who had done a few minutes’ research on TMF put him right. "That's incorrect. They are floating on the London Stock Exchange to raise money to pay off debt. The HQ remains in Amsterdam”. Still, give it a few months and another opportunity for Pierce to be economical with the actualité would present itself.
And so it came to pass: in 2018, the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog told that “The Netherlands’ attempts to rival the UK have not been going well … despite the froth of the Brexit negotiations, Starbucks has become the latte-ist company to pick London over its continental rivals”. Pierce was ecstatic. “Delighted [Starbucks] closing their Amsterdam office to open bigger London office. does that mean they'll stop avoiding paying their British taxes”. But then the bad news arrived.
Amsterdam has taken over from London as Europe’s largest share trading centre, with an average daily trading volume of €9.2 billion in January, versus €8.6 billion in London. And those numbers could get worse for the UK if there is no deal on financial services between the UK and the EU. So it was that Pierce had to explain the bad news live on air yesterday, as a caller to his LBC show pointed out a little reality to him.
One of those who was listening has relayed the reaction of The Great Man. “Share-trading moving to Amsterdam from London ‘is just a technicality’, Andrew Pierce tells a caller claiming no deal for services could be a problem. He says it 4 times”. That’s right up there with the dismembered Monty Python knight saying “tis just a scratch”. Pierce is in denial.
Andrew Pierce is another example of Brexit cheerleaders talking up the UK’s departure from the EU, only to encounter difficulty with the subsequent reality - loss of business, loss of jobs, loss of national status, and loss of credibility. So he pretends it’s not happening.
Except it is happening. Sadly, it’s not yet affecting Andrew Pierce. But give it time, eh?
Enjoy your visit to Zelo Street? You can help this truly independent blog carry on talking truth to power, while retaining its sense of humour, by adding to its Just Giving page at