We all know the Tory rhetoric now. “No deal is better than a bad deal” they keep telling us, and the drones who rote learn their political opinions from the tabloid press have mindlessly regurgitated it millions of times between them to anyone unfortunate enough to have to listen to them or read their pitifully unoriginal blabberings online.
Some of us have tried to ask “how do you actually know that no deal is better than a bad deal?” But there is no sensible answer to be heard. Theresa May and the Tory government didn’t even bother to do any impact economic assessment before making the threat of a “no deal” strop the centrepiece of the diplomatically inept negotiating strategy that it apparently took them half a bloody year to come up with!
The tabloid rote learner drones have no answer either, they just like the simplicity of the eight word sound bite because it has a nice rhyming cadence, it’s easy to memorise, and it’s easy to regurgitate without even thinking about the incredible complexity of what a chaotic “no deal” strop out of the EU would actually entail.
Challenge them about the finer details of it and they’ll either evasively change the subject (as their hero Theresa May does whenever she’s confronted with a question she doesn’t want to answer) or resort to the abusive attack points they’ve also rote learned from the fanatically right-wing tabloids (“remoaner”, “traitor”, “liberal elitist”, saboteur” etc).
Theresa May’s government negligently refused to look into how bad a “no deal” flounce away from the negotiating table would actually be for the UK, but others have. The Institute for Fiscal Studies has estimated that if Theresa May follows through on her threat to strop away from the negotiating table with nothing, the damage to the UK economy would be between 6.3% and 9.5% of GDP.
To put this cliff edge Brexit recession into perspective a little, the effects of the 2007-08 global financial sector insolvency crisis caused a 4.3% slump in national GDP in 2009.
Given that various aspects of the UK economy have not even recovered since the financial crisis a decade ago (real wages are still a whopping 10% below their 2008 level), do you really think that the UK can withstand another recession that is likely to be even bigger than the crisis the bankers delivered with their reckless gambling?
One thing that we all definitely learned was that in a crisis situation the Tory party will always put the economic burden on the majority in order to protect the wealth and privilege of the super rich minority. As a result of Tory ideological austerity after the last economic meltdown UK workers suffered the longest decline in real wages in recorded history while the super rich minority actually doubled their wealth!
People who voted for Brexit because they thought things couldn’t possibly get any worse than they already were for them may have a very nasty shock coming if Theresa May follows through on her threat to deliver a massive cliff edge Brexit recession because the EU won’t give her what she wants.
Even if she somehow faces down the fanatical Eurosceptic hard-right of the Tory party and signs up to some kind of deal with the EU, it’ll be a Tory deal, drawn up by Tory politicians, for the benefit of Tory political donors. There will be nothing but more austerity, more social welfare cuts and more wage repression for the ordinary people who naively gave her a mandate to do it.
Theresa May is comfortable making this kind of lose-lose gamble because she knows that it won’t be her and her kind who suffer the ruination of a cliff edge Brexit. It’ll be people like the working poor, disabled people, the young, the ill, students, the unemployed, workers in the manufacturing, services, health and agricultural sectors, and people who rely on local government services who will suffer. The wealthy elite will always be financially insulated from the most appalling consequences of their actions.
If you vote for the Tories on June 8th you’ll be giving Theresa May a mandate to continue making Brexit up as she goes along to suit her self-serving and ever changing political whims. You’ll be giving her a mandate to follow her extraordinarily reckless “no deal is better than a bad deal” rhetoric through to it’s seemingly inevitable and economically ruinous conclusion.
This time it won’t be faceless bankers to blame for the economic meltdown though, it will be you, and people like you. People who complacently allowed Theresa May to gamble so recklessly and ineptly with the entire UK economy, and believed her bizarre claim that giving her total free rein (rather than electing people to actually hold her to account) would somehow create “certainty and stability” rather than absolute chaos.
Don’t say you weren’t warned.