Frm the BBC

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Toebs
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Frm the BBC

Postby Toebs » Wed Aug 07, 2019 10:20 pm

From the BBC, from Conor Burns MP, International Trade Minister;

https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-politics-49263295

"I think the only question is do we get that deal before the 31st of October or do we get a comprehensive free trade agreement after the 31st of October," he added.


Holy Jesus.

So we're going into this on the basis of... hope?

And I am immediately reminded of something from May's time, which was "businesses will not need to adjust to *two* sets of rule changes".

Well, so much for that.

And then there's this, too.

https://www.bbc.com/news/business-49270872

Last year the government's original "reasonable worst case scenario" for no deal was that for three to six months, 75-87% of "flow" across the "short straits" would be interrupted and forced to join queues on motorways approaching the Channel Tunnel and ports.

That assessment assumed that French authorities would check every lorry coming into its country manually. As there had been no talks between authorities. UK officials had to use satellite photographs to estimate the potential for holding and processing facilities around French ports.

The scenarios were told to industry, but kept secret from the public.


I will pass over the astounding "there had been no talks" and move directly onto the even *more* astounding - and deeply worrying - secrecy.

We need to keep these estimates secret from the public because... because... because?

Because the Civil Service is becoming political, and it is forbidden to release information which goes against the view of the Government?

Kilkis
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Kilkis » Wed Aug 07, 2019 11:03 pm

An interesting comment in the article from the International Trade Minister:

    "But one of the reasons that we ended up with such a poor deal the last time we tried to negotiate this is that the other side didn't believe that we were serious about actually walking away with no deal"

The fact that the Trade Minister has no idea why the May deal was reached in the form that it was is also disturbing. It is absolutely nothing to do with what they thought the UK would do. It is a completely logical outcome given the inputs:

    1 May decided to opt for a Free Trade Deal future arrangement with the EU after Brexit. That was her choice. Nobody imposed that on her.
    2 All Free Trade Deal everywhere in the world involve a border where goods are checked for regulatory requirements, country of origin etc. It is part of WTO policy.
    3 Part of the border between the UK and the EU is on the island of Ireland and the Belfast Agreement stipulates that there will not be a border on the island. Hence there is a conflict between the Belfast Agreement, which is a legally binding International Treaty, and the proposed Trade Deal between the EU and the UK, which will be a legally binding International Treaty. It doesn't matter how you present your negotiating position to the EU, that conflict will exist as long as the end point is a Free Trade Deal.
    4 The EU has accepted that it will be possible to overcome this conflict by technical means but they do not know when it will be possible. Until it does the backstop of staying in the Customs' Union and the Single market overcomes the conflict temporarily until a technical solution is found and implemented.
    5 Leaving without a deal does not resolve the conflict so threatening to do so has no effect.
    6 The EU has accepted the possibility of renegotiating the Withdrawal Agreement if the UK wants a different end point. If the UK wants the same end point, i.e. a free trade deal, there is no point renegotiating it because it will end up the same.

The Minister, in his other comments, seems to believe that the UK can leave on 31 October with no deal and immediately go to the EU and start negotiating a trade deal on 1 November. I think that he is very wrong in this belief. I think the EU attitude will be that they will only start to negotiate a trade deal once a Withdrawal Agreement has been reached on the exit bill, citizens' rights and the Irish border problem. Time will tell.

Warwick

bobscott
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby bobscott » Thu Aug 08, 2019 12:02 pm

Toebs: I do so dislike this civil service bashing!

You said 'Because the Civil Service is becoming political, and it is forbidden to release information which goes against the view of the Government?' Quite: it is FORBIDDEN TO RELEASE INFORMATION - that doesn't mean it is politicised. It may be being used as a political weapon but that's not the same thing. Blame the B****y Government, not its servants. What do you want them to do? Divulge the contents of secret meetings in the same way as politicians have done recently?? Great stuff! Blame where it is due, please. Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

Keltz
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Keltz » Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:37 pm

It was Nigel Farage who said that anyone in the civil service or armed forces who do not believe in Brexit should be sacked. God help us if he ever got into power.

I have no doubt that some in the civil service will be rethinking their relationship with an increasingly far right government but they all signed up to a code of impartiality and cannot speak up.

With missinformation now a tool of government, any partisan acts by the civil service should rightly be called out however I do not sufficiently trust the UK MSM to report it correctly especially state broadcaster the BBC which has refused over the last week to properly report a change in Scotland where the majority now support independence.

Kilkis
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Kilkis » Thu Aug 08, 2019 5:14 pm

You mean the BBC "not reporting it" like in this article? Oooops! Sorry, that is a BBC report. My mistake.

I think the Independent probably got it right in this article:

    That is not to say that this poll represents a sudden embrace of the nationalist agenda. For a considerable number now propping up that favourable percentage, it is a case of supporting the least-worst option. The choice is different from 2014 – it is between an independent Scotland and a post-Brexit UK – a depressingly high-stakes game of “would you rather”. For many, neither scenario is what they want, but if they have to pick one, the former is preferable.

Warwick

Toebs
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Toebs » Thu Aug 08, 2019 5:19 pm

bobscott wrote:Toebs: I do so dislike this civil service bashing!

You said 'Because the Civil Service is becoming political, and it is forbidden to release information which goes against the view of the Government?' Quite: it is FORBIDDEN TO RELEASE INFORMATION - that doesn't mean it is politicised. It may be being used as a political weapon but that's not the same thing. Blame the B****y Government, not its servants. What do you want them to do? Divulge the contents of secret meetings in the same way as politicians have done recently?? Great stuff! Blame where it is due, please. Bob.


I have a somewhat more nuanced view.

I think, to the extent it has happened, that the Service is being mis-used; it is being politicized against its will, as it were.

I do *not* blame the Service for this. I see no wish or motive on *its* part for this to be so - I do blame the politicians for this, and by that I specifically mean the hard no-dealers, who seem to me to be those quite happy to force their views on people and fire or dismiss those who disagree (e.g. Boris and the loyalty pledge in the new-look Cabinet. Think the right thoughts, Comrade!)

The Service itself has not been like this, and would not wish to be.

So I think, although I may be wrong, what I wrote in my original post did not convey this and so led you - quite rightly, I think - to your criticism.

Toebs
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Toebs » Thu Aug 08, 2019 5:34 pm

Keltz wrote:It was Nigel Farage who said that anyone in the civil service or armed forces who do not believe in Brexit should be sacked. God help us if he ever got into power.


And in recent times in the USA independent research performed by State agencies, where it conflicts with the official line of, say, global warming not being a problem, has been suppressed.

This behaviour is actually that which of all is in my view the most dangerous and threatening, because it is affecting the *actual* bedrock and foundation of all that we know as first world civilization.

Government, law, courts, all that jazz - they are not *causes*, but *effects*. They are emergent behaviours.

If we look now at say the UK, or at least say how it was five years ago as to set aside all that which arises from Brexit, we see the Government has profound and enormous power. We as individuals are wholly powerless. The Government has infinite wealth, chooses what the laws are, controls the army and the police, and taxation, and what and how much to spend, and we have almost no idea about most of what goes on. We are powerless. The idea of using the court to bring the Government in a wrongdoing to heel is almost unimaginable - it is a fig-leaf, in fact, to keep people from facing their powerlessness.

And yet with all this, the Government by and large manages *not* to grossly abuse the population and destroy the economy or start wars and so on - in other words, to behave in a reasonable responsible way, as a first world civilization, despite its complete power.

The question then is how on earth is this happening?

I may be wrong, but I think the answer is culture.

The people of a nation are inculcated as they grow with the cultural norms around them. Some of these people in the end form the Government and control the country; *but they limit themselves in what they do by the cultural standards that have been inculcated into them*.

They don't have to.

And when they stop doing so, you have a fundamental problem of the utmost magnitude, because of the enormous power held by Government.

At this point I have two words : Donald Trump.

Is it people who deviate significantly from the first world cultural norms, which have proved effective enough in building stable, decent-enough countries, who are the threat.

As they begin increasingly to impose their values - typically authoritarian - we see developments as we have in Hungary, in Austria, in the USA and now touches of this in the UK, with Farage ('fire those civil servants who disagree with the Government').

When culture norms change, *then* the knock-on effect changes courts, laws, all these other mechanisms.

Kilkis
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Kilkis » Thu Aug 08, 2019 6:06 pm

The problem is that many young people have lost faith in the very idea of democracy and would prefer an authoritarian government, even a military dictatorship. I can understand why but it is a dangerous cultural shift. Getting to choose every five years who gets to do whatever the hell they want is still better than not having any say at all.

Warwick

scooby

Re: Frm the BBC

Postby scooby » Thu Aug 08, 2019 6:42 pm

Kilkis wrote:The problem is that many young people have lost faith in the very idea of democracy and would prefer an authoritarian government, even a military dictatorship. I can understand why but it is a dangerous cultural shift. Getting to choose every five years who gets to do whatever the hell they want is still better than not having any say at all.

Warwick
yup, take your pick between ancient Greece/Athens and Ancient Rome/Italy.

Keltz
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Keltz » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:02 pm

Kilkis wrote:You mean the BBC "not reporting it" like in this article? Oooops! Sorry, that is a BBC report. My mistake.

I think the Independent probably got it right in this article:

    That is not to say that this poll represents a sudden embrace of the nationalist agenda. For a considerable number now propping up that favourable percentage, it is a case of supporting the least-worst option. The choice is different from 2014 – it is between an independent Scotland and a post-Brexit UK – a depressingly high-stakes game of “would you rather”. For many, neither scenario is what they want, but if they have to pick one, the former is preferable.

Warwick


The mistake often made is to just view this from a purely English point of view. Try seeing it from the perspective of those living in Scotland who woke up to this being the main news item in the papers on Monday yet the BBC refused to cover it as news, even on the newly revamped BBC Scotland channel. Nothing.

Late in the day after complaints were made a note was put on the website which you have shown and the BBC responded formally to the complaints by saying they do not comment on individual polls. The next day a Scottish newspaper detailed 27 individual polls the BBC had previously covered.

The BBC guidelines:

In section 10.3.30, they read: “The result of an opinion poll should not be the lead or be headlined in broadcast or other output, unless it has prompted a story which itself merits being the lead or headlined [sic] and reference to the poll’s findings is necessary to make sense of the story.”

Section 10.3.31 reads: “Where there are doubts about the methodology of a poll or the bona fides of those carrying it out, appropriate qualifying language is essential.”

So, was the omission because the poll was such good news for the pro-independence lobby, or were Lord Ashcroft’s “bona fides” suspect? He is after all a Brexit support and Tory donor.

The poll was reported around the world – newsworthy in itself – and the BBC has previously reported on polls, including: “General Election 2015: Poll suggests political figures could lose seats to SNP,” and, “How is the ‘killing the SNP stone dead’ project going?” which political editor Brian Taylor answers with: “Not too wonderfully, it would appear, if one is to place credence in the poll of Scottish constituencies just published by the Tory peer Lord Ashcroft.”

The point I made previously and that this example illustrates is missinformation is a tool of the UK government. Real news needs to be found as the stuff pushed to us through TV and mainstream papers is heavily biased political agenda...in my humble opinion.

Kilkis
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Kilkis » Thu Aug 08, 2019 11:32 pm

In my opinion the big mistake people make is to conflate the fact that people voted in a certain way with them actually caring about the issue. There are undoubtedly people in Scotland who vehemently want independence from the UK. There are also people who vehemently want Scotland to remain part of the union. Between these two views there is a huge group of people who never even think about it. If you ask them the question, i.e. hold a referendum, they will make their mind up one way or another but only because you asked them to make a decision. If you didn't ask them the question they would just get on with their lives never considering the issue.

It is the same with the population of England, the majority of whom couldn't care less if Scotland, Northern Ireland or Wales remain in the union or leave it. Ask them the question in a referendum and they will make a decision one way or the other but it doesn't mean that they actually care.

It is the same with all such decisions. The majority of people didn't care about whether the UK was a member of the EU or not until the EU issue was raised. Yes they saw articles about things that are wrong with the EU and probably moaned with friends down the pub about whatever the latest story was but that was about their limit until you ask them to make a decision. Then they cast a vote one way or the other but it still doesn't mean that they care. All the talking heads you hear from both sides are drawn from the groups that vehemently want to leave or remain. That is why the argument is so polarised.

Warwick

johnincrete
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby johnincrete » Fri Aug 09, 2019 6:12 am

What really annoys me is the way "spokesmen" - oops "spokespersons" - litter their statements with "could be" as in "There could be food shortages" and "Lorry drivers could be trapped on the motorways". If I was a European food producer who currently exports to UK, I would seek any way to continue after Brexit. Ditto German carmakers etc. Even worse are the people who state that such things "will be" without any evidence.

Concerning people being made to take a decision: is this not just the human tendency to want things to stay as they are - "better the devil you know etc" (Personally I don't want to know the devil's way)

bobscott
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby bobscott » Fri Aug 09, 2019 9:26 am

Toebs wrote:
bobscott wrote:Toebs: I do so dislike this civil service bashing!

You said 'Because the Civil Service is becoming political, and it is forbidden to release information which goes against the view of the Government?' Quite: it is FORBIDDEN TO RELEASE INFORMATION - that doesn't mean it is politicised. It may be being used as a political weapon but that's not the same thing. Blame the B****y Government, not its servants. What do you want them to do? Divulge the contents of secret meetings in the same way as politicians have done recently?? Great stuff! Blame where it is due, please. Bob.


I have a somewhat more nuanced view.

I think, to the extent it has happened, that the Service is being mis-used; it is being politicized against its will, as it were.

I do *not* blame the Service for this. I see no wish or motive on *its* part for this to be so - I do blame the politicians for this, and by that I specifically mean the hard no-dealers, who seem to me to be those quite happy to force their views on people and fire or dismiss those who disagree (e.g. Boris and the loyalty pledge in the new-look Cabinet. Think the right thoughts, Comrade!)

The Service itself has not been like this, and would not wish to be.

So I think, although I may be wrong, what I wrote in my original post did not convey this and so led you - quite rightly, I think - to your criticism.


Sounds like we may be on the same page regarding the Civil Service then? Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

scooby

Re: Frm the BBC

Postby scooby » Fri Aug 09, 2019 6:57 pm

For those that like polls (I don’t).

https://apple.news/AMB7Xf8-IM6eVss_ILgshSw

Kilkis
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Re: Frm the BBC

Postby Kilkis » Fri Aug 09, 2019 10:22 pm

So in the case of Brexit, which is an issue between the EU and the UK government, 74 % of Daily Express readers think the Brexit party, which does not have a single MP in the UK parliament, would do a better job than Boris Johnson, who is the current PM. And how exactly are they going to achieve that? I wonder where the idea came from that a lot of leave voters are stupid? Or is it just Daily Express readers?

Warwick


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