A group of Liberal Democrat councillors have claimed Lichfield’s Conservative MP Michael Fabricant is being hypocritical in his views over Brexit.

Michael Fabricant recently told Remainers to “bottle up their spite” and allow the democratic decision to leave the European Union to take place.

But now the group of Lichfield councillors have hit back, claiming the election of the new Prime Minister shows that democracy isn’t being respected across the board.

Paul Ray

In an open letter, Cllrs Hugh Ashton, Paul McDermott, Christine Rapley, Paul Ray and John Smith said: “The recent public pronouncements of Mr Fabricant and his enthusiasm for a move that is almost universally predicted to cause serious damage to individuals, society, and to the Union itself, give us serious pause for thought as to his continued suitability as a Member of Parliament.

“The hypocrisy of the call to respect democracy has become apparent, with members of Mr Fabricant’s party alone having been responsible for selecting Boris Johnson as Prime Minister, and more than 99 percent of the population excluded from voting.

“Is this the ‘sovereignty’ and ‘taking back control’ that Mr Fabricant and his friends have been bleating about for the past few years?

“If by his recent pronouncement where he claims that Mr Johnson ‘will deliver what this country needs with style and panache’ Mr Fabricant means a blatant disregard for the truth and for facts, endless promises which remain unfulfilled, and which demonstrate a clear manifestation of style over substance, then we must agree with him.

“However, we do not agree with him that this is what the country needs.

“Mr Johnson’s personal life and his employment history are matters of public record. Enough has been written about them already. We can only say that we would not trust a man with such a record with a position of responsibility.

“That Mr Fabricant can do so, and enthusiastically endorse Mr Johnson, surely makes us question his judgement on such matters.”

Concerns over a no-deal Brexit have seen the pound drop – and the Liberal Democrat councillors believe the warnings about the impact of leaving the European Union cannot continue to be ignored by the city’s MP.

“Even Michael Fabricant’s ideological colleague Jacob Rees-Mogg has admitted that a downturn will occur, but breezily reassures us that this recession will last a few decades at most,” they said.

“Most of those baying for a swift Brexit seem unable or unwilling to accept the unpleasant reality that a no-deal Brexit will result in many years of negotiation, while the UK remains in an unrepresented powerless limbo, which cannot be eliminated by hysterical cheerleading that references days of past glory.

“We have yet to hear a single convincing argument from Mr Fabricant as to why the UK should leave the European Union. 

“Even before Brexit, the mere threat of leaving the EU has caused the pound to lose 20 percent or more of its value since the referendum, £1trillion worth of investment to move out of the UK into the EU, and hundreds of thousands of jobs lost.

“It is hard to see when and where we will see the post-Brexit ‘sunny uplands’ that were promised to us by Mr Johnson and his fellow-travellers on their path to the cliff edge.

“The 2016 referendum was an advisory, not mandatory, referendum and the terms of leaving the EU were not clearly spelled out. The margin of victory was such that the Leave campaign itself would have called for a rematch had the voting patterns been reversed.

“No doubt we will hear the tired old tropes about democracy and the will of the people, while ignoring the facts that many of the people who voted to leave the EU in 2016 have since died, and over 80 percent of new voters – who will be most affected by the UK’s leaving the EU – wish to remain.

“Additionally, a substantial proportion of those who voted to leave three years ago now feel deceived or misled by the fanciful promises of the Leave campaign.”


Founder of Lichfield Live and editor of the site.

62 replies on “Lib Dem councillors claim Lichfield MP’s Brexit calls are “hypocritical””

  1. I’m not sure I have enough popcorn in anticipation of this thread!

    Given what we knew in 2016 to what we know now, are we not mature enough to say that this is a mistake? Not that any promises were made about what we could realistically expect in the 2016 referendum, those made subsequent to that vote have all fallen by the wayside, and we now talk in decades about how long it will take us to recover.

    None of the claims of ‘being controlled by the EU,’ ‘trade with the rest of the world,’ ‘control our borders,’ have held any water – all disgraceful lies to achieve the coup that is Brexit.

    Brexit has cost the UK taxpayer £87bn and continues to cost £600m per week.

    Parliament is paralysed, not a single piece of primary legislation, outside of Brexit, has been passed.

    As an act of national self-harm, Brexit is unprecedented and the awful thing is, we don’t have to do any of this.

  2. LibDems are whining about BoJo because they’re scared that he will deliver and Brexit will be a success.

  3. It’s not just that many of those who voted “leave” have died, more that all of them were stupid. As for “no deal”, “no deal” means panic stricken dealing from the weakest possible position while the world laughs as it looks on at a country destroying itself. Oh stupid little archipelago. If only school trips to, say Paris, Berlin or Rome had been compulsory in the mid c20 how much better informed the quitlings might have been.

  4. How weird. There has never been an instance of a prime minister being elected other than by their own party members. This might be considered a strange application of democracy but it isn’t hypocritical. The discussion then inevitably dissolves into the many hackneyed observations by the remainers. This usually questions the sanity and maturity of those who support the autonomy of our country. Thankfully it would appear that progress is now likely to be made and that we will leave. I have seen enough instability in some of the member states to convince me it is the right thing to do. There will be agreements….. There always are, but the terms have to be mutually beneficial and not treat us as some sort of pariah. As for the Lib Dems and hypocrisy. Perhaps they should consider their duplicity while in power (ha ha) with the Cameron government. Lastly, we are invited to offer the anonymous writer of this article a coffee for his efforts. Perhaps he should put the whisky bottle away first.

  5. Chris, I voted remain and still wish to do so, but branding everyone who held the opposite view as “stupid” (and by extension everyone who voted remain as clever) is absurd in the extreme. I know many people who voted leave for the reason that they genuinely felt it was for the benefit of the country. In all honesty, they are yet to be proved wrong (although the signs aren’t promising). A bit of humility from either side would be welcome.
    I regret the outcome of the vote and agree with Darryl that, in a mature democracy, the electorate could be asked if they have changed their minds now more information is known. If the leave camp are so convinced that the ‘will of the people’ will prevail, then let’s just check.
    Philip, your arguments are usually well made – even if I don’t always agree with them, but this piece seems a well written report of what the Lib Dem Councillors have said – why denigrate the volunteer journalist by suggesting they must have been drunk?

  6. And we’re off…

    Bojo directly criticised Brown when he took the rains from Blair and called for a general election, those in glass houses etc.

    Instability? Where? Greece, the Eurozone bailed out Greece to the tune of £289bn, caused by country issues, are you trying to equate that with being part of the EU?

    Treat us like a pariah, good grief we’re leaving and the leavers still want the world on a stick, why leave the biggest trading block ever created to negotiate with the biggest trading block ever created? Utter madness.

    Oh look another dig at the Lib Dems over tuition fees, how very now, clearly it’s not felicitous to remember that May bunged the DUP £1bn of our money to stay in power, which is worse?

    No wonder Brexit is such a mess when the unicorns promised are still being believed and never arrive.

  7. You’re wasting your time Philip. They don’t even understand our parliamentary electoral procedure.

  8. No great surprise at some of the comments on here, given who’s posting them.

    Yes, Boris may have criticised Brown’s coronation (which had no vote at all). What effect did it have? Brown still saw out the remainder of his premiership until the last possible moment.

    Instability…hmm, let me think?

    * Italy – dire straits financially and on collision course with EU re. turning migrant boats away
    * France – economy on the downturn, Gilets Jaunes demos on city streets for 38 consecutive weeks, albeit virtually no reporting by mainstream media. Why?
    * Germany – massive recession warning, 8 year old kids being pushed under trains
    * Hungary – sanctions threatened by EU due to Hungary not wishing to be overrun by economic migrants
    * Greece – financial basket-case
    * Spain – youth unemployment at 40%

    But no – all is rosy in EU utopia according to the die-hard remainers.

    The EU as a trading bloc is stagnating economically. Why not be free to trade as we want with much faster-growing economies?

    The only unicorn I see is the notion of a united states of Europe, all working together in lovely harmony with everyone prospering.

  9. Darryl you make some interesting points. Any coalition like the DUP (and others in the past) have a disproportionate influence on government simply because it enables a weak party to remain in power. This means that legislation is passed which is only supported by a tiny part of the electorate as a price for that support. Not my idea of democracy. I make no apology for the Lib Dems reneging on student fees. It was the cornerstone of their manifesto and in any case denying young people the chance of university education because it incurs large debts is not defensible in my view. To cut the Lib Dems some slack I did resist the quote “Go back to your constituencies and prepare yourselves for government” but I think they have missed that boat. No leavers I have spoken to ever expressed any reluctance to trade with the EU. Indeed The European Economic Community was how it was styled when we joined. The terms and conditions have much changed since those times. Instability, well yes Greece is a problem that will persist. Likewise Italy and of course Ireland got close to the brink. There would appear to be a global readjustment (ie a recession) as a potential near event. This will test the mettle of the union. There is disquiet in Germany, Italy, and France about immigration it will be a major problem should their economies come under pressure. I suspect that reality will occur to them soon when they see they are forgoing the world’s fifth largest trading nation. Lastly (and I mean it this time) I can’t help you with the unicorns! Sorry but I have it on good advise that the Welsh dragons have eaten them all. It is however music to my ears to read your “we’re leaving” admission. Perhaps, as my Nemesis, we might cross swords on somthing else a little less worn out.

  10. @Nico

    Yes, Boris may have criticised Brown’s coronation (which had no vote at all). What effect did it have? Brown still saw out the remainder of his premiership until the last possible moment.

    Show me a party that doesn’t want to stay in power and considering we’re talking about the Conservatives paying £1bn to the DUP… great point you’ve made there.

    Instability…hmm, let me think?

    Think harder.

    * Italy – dire straits financially and on collision course with EU re. turning migrant boats away

    Italy has a populist government, so it’s aligned with your thinking, it’s part of membership of the EU, also there are many SOLAS reasons why turning migrant boats away is simply deplorable, but – here come the European nations with humanitarian aid and rescue boats, see – it’s good to be good.

    * France – economy on the downturn, Gilets Jaunes demos on city streets for 38 consecutive weeks, albeit virtually no reporting by mainstream media. Why?

    I’ve watch updates, perhaps you’re looking in the wrong place? Not sure what this has to do with the EU? This is French internal policy.

    * Germany – massive recession warning, 8 year old kids being pushed under trains

    Talk about clutching at straws, pretty lamentable you raise the incident at Frankfurt to have a pop at the EU.

    * Hungary – sanctions threatened by EU due to Hungary not wishing to be overrun by economic migrants

    Actually the sanctions against Hungary are because it is flouting EU law against workers rights, see you just made the case for the EU.

    * Greece – financial basket-case

    Greece has just cleared its financial payments for the bailout, keep up.

    * Spain – youth unemployment at 40%

    What does this have to do with the EU?

    But no – all is rosy in EU utopia according to the die-hard remainers.

    Never once have I said this, what I say is remain and fix from the inside, rather than leave and screw the whole country.

    The EU as a trading bloc is stagnating economically. Why not be free to trade as we want with much faster-growing economies?

    Galactic level of idiocy in this statement. Firstly, the 27 (if we leave) countries of the EU are the closest, it’s a curve, the further away you trade, the more goods costs to transport, thus the goods costs more. There is nothing, simply nothing that can replace the £297 BILLION that we trade with the EU.

    The EU is stalling? There is a global slowdown in trade, but I guess that doesn’t suit your argument.

    The only unicorn I see is the notion of a united states of Europe, all working together in lovely harmony with everyone prospering.

    We did it for decades.

  11. Brexit will not solve anything. And UK is now the 7th largest trading nation, not the 5th – with the second lowest currency I think. What planet do you live on when you believe UK can trade better outside of the EU? Little England in competition with EU27. The Irish border problem is unsolveable. Brexit is chaos. Brexiters own it. They’ve conned people into believing there’s something to be had – but it’s not what people think. Diminishing of worker’s rights, more and more forced deportations splitting families up who have children born here etc. Chaos. And decline. I think Brexit is not going to happen. Because it was always insane. And the likes of the Tory cabinet – full of nasty hateful exploiters who don’t care about people. The executive rules the roost, but not for long. No Deal Brexit would ruin farming and supply of medicines would be problematic. Insanity prevails at present. It’s going to drag on unless Parliament does its job and either calls for Revoking Article 50 or a fair Referendum. However, the Netflix documentary “The Hack” shows that it is impossible for UK to hold fair elections. Even the by election in Brecon Wales has been tampered with by Johnson’s promise of funding. No Deal Brexit would mean lambs being slaughtered with none of usual trade with EU – which is mostly where they are sold. So many issues. For no gain. We already have ability to control our borders, our money etc. It was all bunkum. Yet the MPs still spout as though it means something. Have you seen the £ falling and the price of petrol lately? And the effects of Brexit to UK citizens abroad are awful. The UK state pension falls with the drop in the £. For the sake of the UK Brexit must at all costs be stopped. Good grief – Johnson our prime minister and Bannon on BBC radio and TV! What have we come to? And where are we headed?

  12. Nico – “The EU as a trading bloc is stagnating economically. Why not be free to trade as we want with much faster-growing economies?”

    Such as? And before you list some, are we not free to trade with them whilst in Europe??

  13. Darryl

    Your responses to every point I made, simply illustrate that much of the EU is in political, financial and social upheaval or at least facing serious issues. Seems we largely agree on this point, then.

    And, like you, I’ve seen no lucid argument to change my mind about leaving.

  14. £6.3 Billion now sunk into shielding us from the Brexit fallout that Leave campaigners insisted would never happen.

    Madness and pointless.

  15. Nico,

    Then I can only assume that you’re trolling then, as it takes a few seconds to see the money spent on Brexit so far, the warnings from the Bank of England, and a little longer to see all the downsides to leaving from reputable sources.

    It requires you to get out of your echo chamber.

  16. Rob

    It’s about addressing points from verifiable sources, if your stance is “I hate the EU ‘cos The Daily Mail says it’s crap,” then the troll label is well deserved.


    There’s two points I’d address here, we’ve not had a functioning government for 3 years, secondly this speaks to the quality of people we send to Brussels to work on these proposals, if the UK keeps voting Farage and his ilk, who refuse to participate, then you’re not going to get a slice of the pie.

    There’s a troubling approach with the link and the throwaway “urgh look at those Poles and all our cash,” it’s disingenuous, the regions of the UK have benefits enormously from EU funding, my suspicion is that we have no major funding applications due to point one above.

  17. Darryl,

    We disagree about the EU. I think it’s past it’s sell by date. You don’t. I’m not a troll. Or an idiot. And I don’t feel the need to accuse those I disagree with of being so. The fact that you do, says much about your character.

  18. Nico

    You attempted to present evidence to prove your point, the majority of which can quickly be disproven so, with that in mind, why do you think its past its sell by date?



  19. I’m not really sure why people support Brexit anymore, if you’re a die-hard Brexiteer who simply hates the EU, then fair enough. If you’re a marginal who supports a more isolated nation, would you ignore all the evidence that has been presented in the last 3 years, and this is evidence from trusted sources, and still want Brexit? Therein is the split between troll-like behaviour and balanced judgment.

    This is borne out in the recent statement by Dominic Raab, who is at best being revisionist and at worst simply lying, in saying he spoke about no deal in the referendum, which has been proven by Full Fact to be patent nonsense.

    If you believe in a cause, why damage it by lying? Why wouldn’t you present the evidence that makes it an attractive proposition? The basic truth is that Brexit is as damaging as the evidence suggests and people have ulterior motives to ensure it goes through, the most likely being to avoid the EU tax regulations that are coming.

  20. Darryl

    You disproved nothing, merely carried on with your Guardianista outpourings.

    Italy – what has the fact that they have a ‘populist’ government got to do with my statement that they are in dire financial straits? Nothing.

    Spain – so you are saying that the economic well-being of an EU member state is not anything to do with it’s being an EU member? Great; you’ve proved the case for Brexit!

    France – the Gilets Jaunes demonstrations are a result of what is happening in France. Their ‘internal’ policies are closely aligned with the EU’s lurch towards federalism. And the rise in resistance to these policies can be seen across the continent

    There is precisely no evidence about Brexit being damaging. Reason; we haven’t left yet! It’s purely speculation from those with vested interests in maintaining the status quo.

    You mention the avoidance of EU tax regulations. Presumably by mentioning this, you are confirming that we would be losing our veto if we remained?

    As with most Guardian reading types, I fully expect you will want the last word, as you know you’re always right; I’ll leave you to it.

  21. Nico. There’s no evidence that eating rabbit poo will hurt you either, but I’d rather not do it when all the educated predictions and research point to it having an unpleasant taste.

    You don’t have to have historical evidence to change your mind on something. Simply listening to the endless experts, business leaders and (yes) the government themselves is enough to come to an educated decision.

  22. Could any of the Brexit supporters please outline some of positive benefits of Brexit? Even one. Because so far there’s not a single viable benefit. And explain why you believe the Government’s own analysis of the predicted effects are wrong? UK has lost over 240000 jobs due to Brexit and £1 trillion of investment has gone from the UK to the EU. Along with the numerous beneficial EU agencies and subsidies. Out of the Single market and Customs Union there is no solution to the Irish border problem also. Fabricant has not written a single benefit to Brexit other than the trite “control of our borders, money etc”. It just ain’t true. We have better control inside of EU than outside. Security also. MPs are mostly keen to avoid the tax avoidance directive. And to exploit shorting the £ etc. £ sterling is sinking. Brexit is insane nonsense. UK is going to the bottom. From 5th largest economy to 7th. Where will we end up? People’s jobs and pensions are at risk because the biggest con in UK history is being allowed. Corruption is driving it. Wake up everyone. Brexit must be stopped. UK has already declined even before Brexit. A country can’t walk away from its biggest trading bloc on its doorstep and expect to be better off.

  23. How tedious “you’ll want the last word,” which by implication attempts to debase any argument presented afterwards as proving your point.

    As Christine has said, instead of trying to prove that the countries of the EU are doing poorly, and that somehow proves that the EU is not worth staying in, why not come up with one tangible benefit of leaving?

  24. It’s nothing to do with Christine Rapley or Darryl Godden a democratic vote was held and the majority albeit small voted to leave. People do not have to explain why they voted that way no more than they have to explain who they vote for in a general election. That’s what makes us a democracy and not a banana republic which is what the EU and it’s merry band of loyal supporters has become. For the record I voted remain but seeing how the privileged elite and their flock of lemming like sheep have behaved I’d definitely vote leave were there to be another vote.

  25. He’s right isn’t he Darryl?
    And why does he have to justify himself to you?
    There’s still a thing called freedom of choice, although I’m aware certain factions have issues with this.

  26. No he’s wrong. We’re 3 years down the line and not a single Brexit promise has come true, in fact the picture is worse, and by his own words, we are a democracy and if the democracy changes its mind, it changes its mind.

    Better explained in this great speech by Alex Andreou:

    “Slice it however you want, this fact remains that the moment of Brexit, if it ever comes, will be a majority either for or against the manner in which we do it, the actual way, not the fantasy of easy deals and sunlit uplands but the hard facts, Brexiters say Remainers just want a referendum to stop Brexit, well duh! But the opposite is also true, you don’t want a referendum because you think you might lose it, to suggest it is somehow more democratic to press ahead with a plan of action which Brexiters suspect no longer commands a majority is simply nonsense, if people still support Johnson’s Brexit they can vote for it, it will at the very least confirm to Remoaners like me that there is informed consent but if people don’t support it they can stop it, we should be allowed to, a vote on the final deal is a democratic win-win, the will of the people is incapable of being betrayed by the will of the same people.”

  27. Some people just don’t get it – that Brexit is a con. That it’s ruining our country. The EU referendum was not democratic because it was rigged by those who cheated. Lies, deceit, data harvesting, targeted adverts on social media, foreign money. Electoral Commission has given out the little fines to Vote Leave etc. Convictions for those who cheated. David wants us all to shut up so that undeliverable Brexit that was promised – all upsides, no downside, £350 million per week saved by leaving EU given to NHS. Not a single job loss can be replaced with No Deal Brexit. Brexit is to be fought to the bitter end. David did not vote remain. He refers to the privileged elite – but that’s Johnson, IDS, Truss, Farage, Banks, Brexit Party MEPs who don’t do their job but receive fat salaries etc. The privileged elite want Brexit so they can asset strip our country. Don’t be fooled by David who doesn’t have the courage to say who he is. UK will be a banana republic if Brexit happens. UK does not yet have a functioning democracy. We have a First Past the Post electoral system. 80% of OECD use some form of Proportional Representation. Tory government and Labour Party want FPTP to prevent us ever getting a proper democracy. This is why the country is in such a mess – because FPTP enables exploitation of the masses. UK can’t prosper with any form of Brexit.

  28. @ David…… succinct and true. True democracy is never having to explain your reasons. There are always consequences, mostly unforseen, in every action taken. A little example but with a British parallel is what happened in New Zealand when we abandoned them to join the EEC. Lamb (one of their major products they sold to us) was sold internally at very low prices. People were sick of eating it. Producers then discovered a Chinese market and now the prices for lamb is practically unaffordable in New Zealand. Most of our lamb (in spite of government subsidies ) is sold to Europe. Take a look at lamb prices in the shops. Business will always look for markets that gives them the highest returns. You can doubtless name many brands to confirm this. Home loyalty is no priority to business, or those representing them.

  29. Michael Fabricant voted in with over 34,000 / 64% of the vote.
    Christine Rapley failed to get voted in as a councillor with 361 / 15% of the vote. I could get more votes from my family than that!
    Also by GDP the UK is the 5th biggest economy.
    Think its safe to say the people of Lichfield and district agree with Mr Fabricant more than Christine Rapley and her largely irrelevant (for the last two centuries in any case) Liberals. Sorry my dear but that’s just democracy!

  30. I really don’t care about who promised what, speculative doom-mongering, Greek theatre bods or anybody else.
    We were offerd a choice, we’ve made it. The fact that a few truculent liberals can’t come to terms with it is of no consequence. The fact that they feel privileged enough to assume some arbitrary role in judging the procedure is rather baffling.

  31. BoJo has little or no chance of agreeing a deal this autumn and a no deal will never get through Parliament, so Michael Fabricant, you have joined a crew on a sinking ship. Fear the Lib Dems, as they are on the way up! Another general election and your seat will be up for grabs!

  32. Phillip Allso,

    Reading one of your earlier comments and apologies in advance if I’ve got the wrong end of the stick but I’ve always wondered why it is that Liberals feel everyone is entitled to free tuition fees paid for by everyone else’s taxes?

    It’s okay for me as I have “eventually,” from humble council house beginnings in Brownhills got to a reasonable standard of living. But why should my mates son who is an apprentice bricklayer, or the security guard on our site, or the lady on the checkout counter at Tesco, or the trainee hairdresser, or the trainee bin man, or the young factory worker who are all on minimum wage pay, through income tax, for someone else’s kids further education? When these kids qualify and get a better paid job, if they choose the right degree, will they pay the income tax back to these under paid, under appreciated but nevertheless highly valued members of our society?

    If after 5 years of coalition government the biggest regret for Nick Clegg, his few MPs and supporters is voting for tuition fees where elsewhere the biggest recession in living history was going on, the Syrian civil war began, anarchy prevailed in Libya, Russia annexed Crimea and the Fukushima Daichi nuclear disaster happened in Japan then is it little wonder that the privileged David Lloyd George (first Earl of Dwyfor) will forever be known as the last Liberal Prime Minister?

    By the way if you want good quality lamb an very affordable prices may I suggest Howdles Family Butcher in Clayhanger, Brownhills – unbelievable value! Example: 5 LB or for the remainers 2.27 KG of Loin Chops £15.
    See: info@edmundhowdle.co.uk

  33. @ David Watson…. There was a time when most higher education was supported by grants. About 3% of the student population went on to higher education and most others (ie those seeking achievement) took up apprenticeships or / and went to technical collages. These were mainly supported by the companies they worked for. When it was decided that (for political reasons and to massage the growing unemployment figures) to radically increase the university intake to 30% it was clearly stated that “It is not possible or desirable to deliver the same level of education that was given to the 3%.” Generally I believe this has proved to be true. It started as a relatively modest contribution to finance the avalanche of new universities that sprang up to meet this apparently aspirational opportunity to better oneself. This, of course, in the expectation of the well paid employment that would follow. Industry and commerce quickly followed requiring university qualifications for even mundane jobs. It had upped the anti and created a university business that rapidly increased fees and effectively caused massive dept loans (interest 6% per annum) to many that gained degrees of questionable quality. It also excluded many who just would not enter into such debt. I am not a Liberal. I come from a trade union background and believe the state benefits from proper education and should finance it for all. I also accept that there will be those who never respond to education but nevertheless have aptitudes that are valuable to society. Your argument about such people subsidising those in further education is spurious. I pay for many things through taxation that I have no need for. Tax is a collective pot and pays for all the country’s needs. The present university system is a government initiative and should be paid for accordingly. Hopefully in the long run it will prove beneficial. Some aspects I see have already created their own problems. I think that education has become somthing of a political football and is rarely out of the news. Frankly it would take a book to cover the many nuances.

    As for the lamb. Yes those prices are unbelievable. Sort of proves my point really!

  34. Philip,

    Some good points made and I acknowledge them.

    I come from a mining background but my Grandad, great Grandad, great, great Grandad (you get the picture) wanted for nothing neither would they expect to pay for Tony Blair and David Cameron’s kids (Nick Clegg is a Jaffa) to go to university.
    I agree with you on the expectation of better jobs and I hadn’t considered the unemployment argument which is a good one although by the time Polytechnics promoted themselves to universities unemployment wasn’t as much of an issue if memory serves me correctly. However I will bow to your greater knowledge on that one.

    Slightly patronising the spurios comment. Taxation should go to essentials to maintain a civilised and cohesive society. When there is an equal need for bricklayers, security guards, hairdressers, factory workers, et al. I do not consider the free funding of ‘higher” education of other peoples kids, some of them very wealthy, to be a national priority or an essential. Coming from a trade union background I’m surprised you do as well.


  35. So the simple answer is, Brexiteers still have nothing beyond ‘you lost, get over it.’

    If we do manage to stop Brexit, my hope is that there is less political intransigence, more compromise, improved understanding and informed choices. We can’t continue to base decisions on ignorance and prejudice.

  36. By the way take a look at the history of the now meaningless Liberal party and work out for yourself how disastrous your last two Prime Minister’s were for the continent of Europe.

  37. LOL @ Darryl.
    “more compromise”
    “We can’t continue to base decisions on ignorance and prejudice.”
    Irony meter just flew off the wall!

  38. David Watson… No offence intended. It is a real change to have a proper exchange of views. In truth nothing is carved in stone and much is just opinion. My wife is from Tonypandy, the significance of which I am sure you understand. On education, I have always believed in life long learning. The challenges for the next generation where automation and artificial intelligence will be a significant factor might well depend on it. If it was acceptable to grant finance the teachers and doctors etcetera of our generation then why not now? There are issues with universities that I think unacceptable. This applies mainly to the Russel group of universities and the subtle networking and political influence they exert. The public school system which perpetuates class superiority is also an old world anachronism we could do without. How do we differentiate the attributes people bring to society. Should the bricklayer receive the same as a doctor or university lecturer? In a Marxist society maybe, (I don’t advocate this) but in our capitalistic society very improbable, so on what basis is the judgment made? On direct taxtion it is unlikely we pay in more than we take out. Other taxation makes up the difference. There are others who for various reasons do not contribute anything. Society has to accomodate all circumstances. Government is about how and for what reason such revenue is distributed. Business on the other hand is a force independent of government. It is still the age old battle of capital and labour. It is largely without conscience and will function on the premise of what and where lies their best interests. Their lobby on Brexit is all about this.

  39. There are plenty of examples of total Muppets being elected in safe seats, from all parties, not just Fabricant or Truss. The reasoned opinion of a non-MP is perfectly valid, the ideological and illogical warbling of Truss etc not necessarily so. While I am amused to find Dave’s family is big enough to give him a ward majority, I’m not enthused by his specious argument about Fabricant. There is a reason Fabricant has never risen to the heights of tea boy in the Tory Party.

  40. Burntwood Bloke…. Might I suggest that having discourse with those you consider insane might cause question about your own state of mind?

  41. Likewise Phillip unlike others who no matter what another person says come back with either:
    1. Quotes from Greek economists writing for the Guardian
    2. The retort “you are wrong.”
    3. That proves I was right.
    It’s basically very poor debating and probably why the Liberal party have become such an irrelevance.

    Again on your points I acknowledge them and can see your point on others.

    Regarding John’s point on muppets I agree. My family voted labour until Callaghan and then switched which was not an easy decision since we come from a mining family and community both sides.

    In my lifetime or living memory Blair was by far the worst, Brown was a joke, Cameron tried bit was a posh boy who did not understand real life and May, well the least said the better.

    But my reference to Asquith and George (both privaledged) were because one took us into WW1 and where an estimated 19 million died (including several from my family) fighting over the murder of an Arch Duke and the other took us through and out of WW1 and was a signatory to the worst European treaty of all time, the Treaty of Versailles. This directly lead to the rise of Fascism and WW2 where an estimated 80 million lost their lives.

  42. Phillip, I take your response as part of that conversation and have made my conclusions

    Boris seems hell bent to push ahead with No Deal even with all these circumstances:

    – Unelected as PM
    – Tories no real majority
    – Parliament expressly against
    – lost vote of no confidence
    – election overruns leave date

    Meanwhile we’ve got David Frost telling the EU that a technical solution to the Irish border could be possible before then admitting it wouldn’t be ready by October 31st.

  43. Dave, you fail to mention, if you’re going to attempt a lofty position on ‘poor debating,’ that no one has brought forward a cohesive view on something that we will benefit from, should we leave the EU.

    Apparently yours, Rob’s and even Philip’s taciturn stance is acceptable, yet my opinion that you’re simply proving my point that no one has a benefit about the leaving the EU, to the three of you stating you don’t have to justify your position, makes me somehow wrong. Quite a position, and leap, to take.

    Anyway, this is tedious, it is not possible to debate, as you call it, with someone who presents a position of ‘I don’t have to justify myself.’

    You keep using the term ‘Liberal Party,’ are you referring to the Liberal Democrats? Because the Liberal Party died in 1988.

    WWI & II, is there a relevance to Brexit? Other than the rise in fascism we see on the coat tails of Trump, Farage, Johnson, Yannon, Hopkins, Widdecome et. al.

  44. Anyway, this is going round in circles, as pro-Brexit posters fail to bring any benefits to the table for leaving the EU, lets go with hard facts:

    What we now know about the 2016 EU referendum:

    There was Russian interference and dark money injected into the campaign by Banks and his cohorts.

    Farage & Johnson used attack ads which were plainly false (Turkey is joining the EU, £350m for the NHS), Hannan ‘nobody is talking about leaving the Single Market.’ ‘Easiest deal in history’ Fox. Leave.EU falsehoods about border control, making our own laws, paying more in than we get out, immigration, all proved to be at the very least arguable and worst, simply lies.

    The government proactively pressured the lords to reject a cross-party bill to allow the 16 & 17 years olds to vote in the EU referendum, people most affected by any vote to leave.

    Health tourism, another falsehood.

    What we have since the referendum:

    Fines for the official leave party and its subsidiary.

    Lost the Medicines Agency, and numerous other business have upsticks, costing jobs.

    Criminal case files passed to the Met Police about wrongdoing in the EU referendum.

    Simply zero of the promises of leaving the EU have transpired, all have been proved to be patent nonsense.

    Brexit costs the UK £600m per week, and wiped £66bn off the economy in the last July study.

    Johnson found guilty of lying, although a trial overturned on appeal.

    Gambling with peace in Northern Ireland.

    Lorry parks in Kent, mystery ferry companies – cheers Grayling.

    Poll after poll shows that Britain has changed its mind, 1.4m eligible voters for the 2016 have died since the referendum took place, making the ‘will of the people’ laughable.

    Brexit MEPs lying day in, day out, in lamentable attempts to debase the EU (Mercs for transport, iPads for work, voting machines not workings), also a considerable number of them simply don’t bother turning up for work.

    Just this morning, the former US treasury secretary stating clearly on Radio 4 ‘the UK is desperate and has no negotiating leverage and needs a deal soon.’

    Government’s own leaked no-deal analysis, public disorder, food shortages, medicine shortages – none of this was spoken about in the pre-referendum speeches.

    Johnson’s ‘kipper pillows,’ not a EU rule, but a UK one, more lies.


    I was fairly ambivalent the EU prior to the EU referendum, the fact that so much cheating and lies have taken place, made me a staunch remainer, if you have to build your case on utter bulls*t, your case isn’t worthy of consideration.

  45. It says much for our “United Kingdom” Darryl when after a democratic vote its component parts want to dissolve because of the result. It would have been more honest if they had just refused to take part. That at least would have given them the moral high ground. In any case thinking the Northern Ireland impasse is solved by membership of the EU is wrong. Anymore than that of the Wallons, the Basks and especially the Serbians and soon to be admitted Croats among other long standing conflicts. Even the Welsh, Scots and Irish hold long term grievances (some justified) that stand the test of time. I like many would return the six counties to Ireland if those living there were in agreement. The likelihood is that it would result in a political and religious bloodbath. Europe is not stable. The northern countries were Russian satellites until recently. When Russia regains its strength it is probable it will again enter into expansionism as it has in the past. Other than trade there is more that divides us both culturally, politically and historically than unites us. We are no longer empire builders and it is basically wrong to perceive that Europe holds all there is to perceive if it means sacrificing our autonomy. We cannot be the United States of Europe like that of America because history and circumstance make this impossible. It does not mean we cannot be friendly. Knowing who your real friends are is a neat trick. On the mechanism of Brexit most of what has been stated by both sides is sheer politicking. I will view the “facts” that I think have veracity in as rational a way as my limited intellect will allow. I do not expect to be right in every particular but for better or worse the decision will be my own. Your considerations might well be different and influenced by different things. We do not have a monopoly on intelligence but I am sure we hold the good of our country at heart.

  46. David Watson makes such pathetic cheap shots comparing Fabricant’s safe seat with my not being elected as a District councillor. I am completely new to politics. Fabricant has been on the scene for donkey’s years. Lichfield is mostly Toryland. But it can change. I’m not anti Conservative – but I abhor the current government and its wicked policies. I choose to ally myself with reason. Brexit is completely lacking in any rationality. The country needs to remain in the EU for the prosperity and security of the majority of citizens. Many people are oblivious to the decline of living standards in the UK. We simply cannot survive well outside of EU membership. David Watson I challenge you to explain what is good about Michael Fabricant’s support and clearly your own for Brexit. What are the benefits? Fabricant is silent on this. Apart from the blah blah of borders, money, sovereignty. The rest of the world is astonished and laughing at the idiocy of Brexit. Over 240000 jobs have gone to the EU. HSBC has just announced it’s cutting thousands of jobs, also Tesco. What are the benefits of Brexit? Why can’t Brexiters answer a simple question? Never mind the cheap shots about how many votes the Tories get/ got. They have bought support. The Tory party take vast sums of donations from Russians. UK politics needs to be cleaned up and we need Proportional Representation to curb exploitation. It’s very hard to understand why people vote to be exploited. Lemmings?

  47. Burntwood Bloke….. There are some people like Boris and Trump who automatically make your hackles rise. Likewise some prominent business men and women do the same. There is somthing about their abrasive personalities that is at least irritating. We are largely compliant in nature and accept their dictates more readily than their more benign counterparts…..Thats what makes then successful. We find ourselves in a totally invidious situation over Brexit and a solution must be found. Perhaps, just perhaps Boris might be able to deliver. The political chess game is still in progress with the EU. They pretend indifference but in reality are very aware of the consequences it will have on them. We are still at the strategical stage. The tactical endgame is nearing and I do not rate our chances as less than theirs. If Boris’s more aggressive approach works out all well and good. Then we can turf him out!

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