Daily Debrief April 9th

Can you trust this man?

David Cameron delivers a speech in Aberdeen in the closing days of the Scottish referendum campaign

If indeed the Prime Minister has broken no law and has paid all taxes due, then he’s had rather a hard time in the press (but he should also fire his PR man – as always, it’s not the facts, but the dodging and diving that do the damage).  Nonetheless, the Scottish Herald reports that Cameron’s approval rating is now below Jeremy Corbyn’s. Quite an achievement.  And if the public don’t trust him on tax, will they trust him on Brexit?  Cameron has now been referred to the Parliamentary Standards Office

Fury over £9.3 million leaflet

There is huge anger among Eurosceptic Tory MPs in Westminster over the government’s plan to send an expensive pro-EU booklet to 27 million homes. Some are reportedly threatening to make government business “grind to a halt” by voting against all government bills until Cameron backs down.  With his small Tory majority, this is a credible threat.  The situation is not helped by the Electoral Commission’s condemnation of the plan. Or the fact that the leaflet is printed by a German company which has received grants from the EU Commission.  Michael Gove has been prominent in attacking the £9.3 million spending – and in attacking the EU’s schools propaganda (see below).

Petition against the pro-EU leaflet has 173,260 signatures

The petition against the government’s EU leaflet has 173,260 signatures as I write.  If you haven’t signed yet, please go to – https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/116762

The EU Commission floods our schools with crass propaganda

The Sun reports that the EU Commission is using its £158 million propaganda budget to flood British schools with crass pro-EU comics ahead of the British referendum – despite explicit promises from Jonathan Faull,  the Commission’s point-man on the Referendum, that the Commission would not interfere.  I shall write to him about this.

More preposterous scaremongering from the Remain Camp

Michael Fallon, usually half-sensible, has suggested that we may be unable to fly to European cities after Brexit.  Meantime the Telegraph, in an analysis of the claims in the government leaflet, points out that Europe-wide flight agreements already cover many non-EU countries, and would certainly include an independent Britain.  For heaven’s sake we can fly to Sydney and Singapore and San Francisco – is it likely we won’t be able to fly to EU destinations?  Fallon’s claim is about the equivalent of saying “Channel Tunnel will collapse after Brexit”.

IEA: “Brexit could increase national output by 13%”

We’ve heard all the apocalyptic claims from the Remain camp of economic damage that might be caused by Brexit.  In response, I like to quote Tim Congdon and Patrick Minford, who have both concluded independently that EU membership costs the UK 10 to 11% of GDP.  So I was delighted to see the estimate from the authoritative and highly respected Institute for Economic Affairs that Brexit could increase UK national output by a whopping 13%.

“Farmland prices hit by Brexit fears”

The FT reports that farmland prices have taken a quarterly dip, based on concerns about Brexit and fears of a loss of farming subsidies.How many times do we have to say it?  Britain had a perfectly good (and much less bureaucratic) farm subsidy régime before we joined Europe in 1973, and will have one afterwards.  We contribute £6 bn a year to the CAP, and get only £3 bn back.  Better a farm subsidy régime designed in Britain for British farmers than a farm subsidy régime designed in Brussels for French farmers.  And if we stay in the EU, farmers will find more and more CAP money going to poor countries in Eastern Europe (and maybe Turkey and Ukraine eventually), with less funding for the UK.

Belgian police finally get their man

Belgian security forces have reportedly arrested Mohamed Abrini, believed to have been a key player in the Paris attacks, and also strongly suspected of being “the man in the hat”, the third man in the Brussels Airport bombing, the one that got away.  We shall all sleep easier in our beds.

Latest poll-of-polls puts the Referendum on a knife-edge

The latest poll-of polls shows exactly 50/50.  All to play for.  And I believe that differential turnout will give Brexit the edge.

120 more migrants returned to Turkey

On Monday we saw 202 migrants deported from the Greek Islands to Turkey.  Then no more until yesterday, when 120 were returned.  At this rate, our grandchildren will be watching the final deportees.

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7 Responses to Daily Debrief April 9th

  1. Ex-expat Colin says:

    Ok…I’m off to buy some farmland today.

    Trouble with 4 banks…various rate fiddles (who’d off guessed?)
    Steel plant in administration: (Detroit SA version?)


    Messy global place.

  2. Richard111 says:

    At this rate our grandchildren will be playing cricket with the grandchildren of the final deportees as children born in the UK get automatic UK citizenship and it is ‘human rights’ that will allow the parents to remain in the UK.

  3. I think one of the Brexit campaigns should attempt to start a debate (I know this is not easy with our media) about how to spend the extra money we will have once we are out of the eu.

    – It’s a nice problem
    – It is positive
    – It is a good news story
    – It is an antidote to project fear.

  4. Shieldsman says:

    Michael Fallon like David Cameron has not stated why Air travel to and from Europe should be a problem when we leave the EU.
    Cameron made the case that a British Airline would not be able to use fifth freedom right, but then there is little need nowadays the vast majority of flights are point to point, that is single sector.
    The liberalisation of the European aviation market has meant the low cost carriers making more use of 7th to 9th freedom rights. 7th freedom the right to fly between two foreign countries while not offering flights to one’s own country.
    It is used by EasyJet and RyanAir, but it is by agreement with the Countries concerned as are all freedoms.
    RyanAir is registered in Ireland and Eire will remain in the EU, but the UK would have no reason to revoke its 7th freedom rights.
    When you look at the number of EU15+2 flights per week, you sees that EasyJet are peaking at just under 10,000 and RyanAir at 8,000. To interfere with their traffic rights would cause chaos in the low fare market.

  5. MIKE MAUNDER says:

    A GENERAL OBSERVATION UPON DAVID CAMERON : He might be a nice guy, if met in the local pub, with chat about sport. That is about all I can see that might be OK with him, and I voted for his mob last May ! Although he can look the part of a P.M., and at P.M.Qs, with the assistance of his staff, he is able to come out on top, against Corbyn, how is it that the leader of the opposition is now ahead of him on ‘ Respect ‘ ? – Labour has problems too, with the Blair faction not happy with Corbyn, and yet this strange switch has taken place in the polls,
    We all know that M.Ps turn facts around, assisted by those statistics that are favourable to their point of view. The public calls them very bluntly, lies. Politicos see them as hidden facts that the public need to be made aware of. Cameron’s errors started with the firm link of his Party to a referendum. He knew it had been used before, so he dug a hole to support certainty for it. Worry about UKIP taking Tory votes paid off in 2015 with a majority government. ( My vote ! ).
    The next mistake was not finding out the mood of the people, in regard to the E.U. Cameron may well find himself in the wrong camp, and that will not do. Although a referendum should be fair, he gets the jitters about how well the Leave camp is doing, and his hand goes into the tax till to pay for more junk mail for every house in the country. Suddenly a joker in the pack is played, with the Panama Papers. and Cameron panics. He knows his dear old Dad was involved in this but rather than face it out, his panic leads to dithering. Hardly a firm hand on the helm of U.K., and some of us wonder if his expensive school was paid for in part by tax avoidance ! ? ! His copy to Edward Heath’s lies fail. Heath got away with it because the subject had never been raised before. Cameron tries to follow, but there are too many of us still seething about the lies told to us, by our Prime Minister. Another blow against him was delivered by Mick Cash, the leader of the RMT rail union, who gives good argument for his VOTE OUT. Cameron thought that at least Labour and the Unions would support him. ( Strange him thinking that ! ).
    Your in a big mess David. You are on record as saying that you will retire before the next election. Why not go now David ? You could save yourself a bit of dignity !

  6. davidbuckingham says:

    A Sunday Times article last week by David Smith saying ‘Brexit Britain’ would look less attractive for investors? He’s talking about Foreign Direct Investment. The nub of his argument seems to be we would no longer be a gateway to the EU single market for the rest of the world. Can anyone explain what this gateway amounts to and how it works ?

    Interestingly he fesses up to having previously seen UK potential as “the Hong Kong of Europe, free of eurosclerosis, with low taxes and deregulated products and labour”. He now thinks that’s unrealistic, without saying clearly why, but hinting that we are already as deregulated and low-taxed as we can hope to be, given the anti-big business culture. Added to which he says UK already has the biggest FDI in the EU, so what’s not to like? (under big business he makes no distinction between crony corrupt lobby-driven corporations and your honest and true successful free enterprise.

    I love the Hong Kong – China mainland analogy for UK – EU mainland – much more accurate and vivid than reference to Norway, Switzerland or Canada… a free economy winning against a sclerotic dictatorship.

    Incidentally I’m finding the use of the term Brexit increasingly cheapening and demeaning of the goal of the UK breaking free of the EU quagmire and rejoining the rest of the world as a self-determining independent nation.

    • MIKE MAUNDER says:

      You have to look long and hard for a David Smith, as most media people take a position on any subject, and stick to that position in spite of all public details that are given and made known.
      David Smith is one who speaks from the mouth one week, but the next week he will speak out of his bottom. I suppose it’s entertainment for some !

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