Martin was warned that one of the consequences of Brexit would be that some EU nationals who had lived and worked in the UK would leave the country, either to return home or move to other EU member states. This, he decreed, was Project Fear. Nothing, but nothing, could be bad about Brexit. Now has come the screeching U-Turn.
The hospitality industry - for which read bars, restaurants and of course all those Spoons pubs - began to reopen to customers in April, with indoor opening last month. Thus far, it is table service only, and Martin and his merry men have made a startling discovery: they are short of staff. This may be not unconnected to, er, EU nationals who had lived and worked in the UK before Brexit choosing to leave the country. As he was warned.
So what is Mr Spoons’ preferred solution to the problem which, in significant part, has been caused by the wonders of the Brexit he so ardently championed? You’ll love this one: as the London Economic has told, “Tim Martin calls for more EU migration as Wetherspoons is hit by bar staff shortage”. Yes, he wanted Brexit, but not THAT kind of Brexit. No, he wanted the kind of Brexit beneficial to Himself Personally Now.
And he was prepared to display the full range of his prejudice and ignorance in order to get his point across. “The UK has a low birth rate. A reasonably liberal immigration system controlled by those we have elected, as distinct from the EU system, would be a plus for the economy and the country … America, Australia and Singapore have benefitted for many decades from this approach. Immigration combined with democracy works”.
Britain is not producing enough workers! Perhaps this is not unrelated to all those taking advantage of Spoons’ cheap booze and making themselves incapable of procreation. But he is sure that there is something called an “EU system”, which is bad, and an alternative system controlled by the UK, which is good. Because it is somehow more democratic!
How much sense does that make? Well, it makes none at all. Martin was warned what would happen. He chose to dismiss those warnings as mere scaremongering. What he was warned about has now happened. He, and all those other Brexit boosting business folk, advocated for this outcome, made their beds, and now they can lie in them.
After the way he’s behaved towards his own staff, Tim Martin should not be surprised if the public no longer gives a rat’s arse about his predicament. I’ll just leave that one there.
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