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BORIS’ BACKSTOP BALLS UP

By Patrick Van Roy On August 1st, 2019

Guest Post by Paul McMahon

British prime minister Boris Johnson cautioned the European Union on Saturday that the “anti-democratic” Irish backstop must be ditched if they were to strike a Brexit divorce deal

So what is the ‘backstop’? 

After 18 months of negotiations between London and Brussels, the backstop mechanism was included in the legally-binding Withdrawal Agreement, approved by the British government and the other 27 EU countries in November 2018. Among other matters, the agreement paved the way for a transition period to come into effect after the UK’s departure, keeping many existing arrangements in place to avoid instant disruption and allow more time to sort out future UK/EU relations. Should future talks fail to produce a Free Trade Agreement by the end of the transition period, at that point the backstop would come into force. It envisages the UK remaining in a “single customs territory” with the EU, with the Northern Ireland state more deeply integrated with the bloc’s rules. This should ensure the free circulation of goods while the alignment of rules and regulations should avoid the need for physical border infrastructure, with checks and controls :

The Withdrawal Agreement including the Backstop was no sooner agreed by the UK Government and the EU27 that the DUP tail wagged the Brit Government dog and humiliatingly slapped May down:

The DUP are of course the lynchpin in keeping the Cons in power, who depend on the ten DUP MPs to maintain their slim majority in Westminster. 

Now that it seems to be that the UK is going to crash out of the EU in October in a no EU deal WTO Brexit which requires physical border infrastructure on the island of Ireland it’s sadly amusing watching uber Brexis trying to apportion the blame for their entirely self created chaotic mess. Johnson calls the backstop ‘undemocratic’ (we’ll see how ‘undemocratic’ it is), while those backwoods men and women who dictate terms to the British Government state that the EU are :

(A) belligerent EU who instead of focusing on a deal that was good for all of us, wanted to break up the United Kingdom

So there we have it, England and Wales impose their Brexit on Scotland and the NI state where it’s unwanted. A no Backstop, (that the DUP insisted was jettisoned), WTO Brexit, despite the EU being variously flexible in negotiations, is very probably on the cards and it’s all the fault of the ‘non democratic’ Irish, both north and south, and the EU.

My patience, (and I suspect most others), has run out with the mollycoddled Brexiteers and I frankly hope that they go ahead with their scorched earth policy. At the time of the EU referendum I knew of three former IRA prisoners who voted to leave because it would hasten the break up of the UK and reunify Ireland. Everything they’ve predicted has so far come to pass. It is said that since the age of thirteen Johnsom has wanted nothing else than to have his name inscribed on the Prime Minister plaque at his old alma mater, Eton. He has it there now but I suspect he may go down in history as the PM who dissolved the smaller union in order to add to the bigger one. 

Bring it on. 

18 Responses to “BORIS’ BACKSTOP BALLS UP”

  1. As always, thanks Pat.

  2. no problem

  3. This problem was caused by the British, and it is they who must do all the compromising in any issues that in any way involve the Irish border and the protection of the GFA.

  4. A key point here is that, economically, the Backstop was a glorious win-win for NI. It gave NI unfettered access to the EU single market and, practically, also the UK market…even after the transition period ended.

    Given NI voted to remain, this was a just outcome.

    Enter the bigoted imbeciles of the DUP who shot it down and worked against their own constituents interests against the Backstop. Their reasoning that “it treated NI differently from the rest of the UK” is laughable given their support for differential treatment for NI in other spheres (e.g. abortion and same-sex marriage).

  5. A key point here is that, economically, the Backstop was a glorious win-win for NI. It gave NI unfettered access to the EU single market and, practically, also the UK market…even after the transition period ended.

    Reg, it could have incrediblely economically invigorated the North and ended the bottomless pit which is Britain’s annual multi billion quid subsiduary of it. It also may have ironically cemented the North’s position within the UK.

    It may also have some negative effects on Britiain:

    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/this-is-not-about-a-return-to-empire-us-congressman-warns-johnson-on-belfast-agreement-1.3972382?fbclid=IwAR2OahvrpO2N6QhGHFxvTVOhpz9aSTsEjQ-YVHEF7PzUK7x_VMU1ucSWqD0

  6. Fortunately I don’t know any murderers nor terrorists so I don’t know how that demographic votes. I suspect that Boris Johnson considers the IRA now to be so compromised (homo-ified, feminised, Africanised and utterly corrupted) that it could never be a real threat to anybody other than those within it.

  7. I wonder would Varadkar ever be tempted to do some side deal with BJ, involving NI and the Backstop that would benefit all. So far, Dublin is firmly closing ranks with Brussels, but he could maybe tentatively agree something with the British and then present it to the rest EU as a deal the Irish govt supports.

    Interesting times.

  8. A nonsense post, from the very first line.

    After 18 months of negotiations between London and Brussels, the backstop mechanism was included in the legally-binding Withdrawal Agreement ..

    It’s not legally binding. Parliament rejected it three times. Even for most Remainers the backstop was so bad, so undemocratic and so much a red herring that Parliament would not ratify it.

    The only purpose of the backstop was to divide the United Kingdom. As regards trade, it was always a red herring and everyone now knows it.

    This problem was caused by the British, and it is they who must do all the compromising in any issues that in any way involve the Irish border and the protection of the GFA.

    There is no problem. In fact the backstop might well be in contravention of the Belfast Agreement.

    https://www.irishtimes.com/news/ireland/irish-news/david-trimble-formally-begins-legal-challenge-to-backstop-1.3791713

    The people now promoting a return to terror in the event of no backstop are the same people who have been telling us that the Irish republican recalcitrants are very few in number. It’s like saying that the US should have become a socialist state because of the Weather Underground.

    Sorry, the sovereign status of the United Kingdom will not be held ransom by some Creggan headbangers.

  9. It’s not legally binding. Parliament rejected it three times.

    Unlike the Brexit referendun itself which wasn’t advisory at all and was absolutely legally binding?

    The only purpose of the backstop was to divide the United Kingdom.

    Wow, volte face alert. Didn’t you once say that the dissolution of the small union would be a price worth paying for Brexit?

    In fact the backstop might well be in contravention of the Belfast Agreement.

    We’ve been through this rubbish earlier this year Pete:

    Paul McMahon, on April 4th, 2019 at 7:57 PM Said:

    Who told you the backstop is illegal Pete? […]

    Lord Trimble for one, who co-drafted the Belfast Agreement

    Ah yeah? Is that right?

    The former leader of the Ulster Unionist Party – currently sitting in the House of Lords as a Conservative peer – said the proceedings would demand the removal of the protocol on Northern Ireland from Prime Minister Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement.

    He said that the backstop should be replaced by alternative arrangements set out in a report entitled A Better Deal and A Better Future authored by Eurosceptic Conservative MP Steve Baker and published by the Global Britain group.

    A spokesman for Lord Trimble was unable immediately to provide an explanation for the claim that the protocol breaches the Good Friday Agreement.

    https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/brexit/brexit-lord-trimble-to-take-government-to-court-over-irish-backstop-saying-it-breaches-good-friday-agreement-37781408.html

    Got that? – was unable immediately to provide an explanation for the claim that the protocol breaches the Good Friday Agreement

    But he sent a Notice of Action letter to the Government on the 8th of November I hear you cry. He simply must know what he’s doing.

    Yeah, right enough……but wait, what’s this?

    While a temporary backstop for a short period is acceptable to all parties
    (including the DUP), it is clear that the prospect of an enduring structure,
    with expanding and dynamic functions, is untenable in the long run and
    could lead to socially disturbing effects and potential instability. It would
    be unpalatable for both Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.

    As a result of this shift in position, the UK Government is now correct in
    asserting the right, in extremis, to appeal to international law under the
    Vienna Convention.

    https://policyexchange.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2019/03/Nothing-Has-Changed-It-Has-Actually.pdf

    What? dated March 18th you say?

    So Trimble has realised that his publicity stunt in an attempt to remain relevant ‘court case’ actually didn’t have any merit after all and he’s now stating that the backstop isn’t illegal in principle and is attempting to wipe the egg off his face has published a paper on it?

    Well alright then.

    http://www.atangledweb.org/?p=77973

    I wonder would Varadkar ever be tempted to do some side deal with BJ, involving NI and the Backstop that would benefit all

    The answer could be for the Brit Gov to hold a referendum in the wee six to see if the Backstop is acceptable to the electorate there but of course that would undermine the DUP and consequently weaken Boris’ majority in Westminster.

    Fortunately I don’t know any murderers nor terrorists

    Perhaps not although as you’ve previously told us that your role in ‘activism’ is financial support and subsribing to various organisations I wonder just who you’re financially contributing to?

    I suspect that Boris Johnson considers the IRA now to be so compromised (homo-ified, feminised, Africanised and utterly corrupted) that it could never be a real threat to anybody other than those within it.

    Yet again, you’re more than welcome to come to Belfast and I’ll facilitate a meeting with former IRA prisoners and you can put your concerns to the homo-ified, feminised, Africanised and utterly corrupted former voluteers yourself.

  10. Yet again, you’re more than welcome to come to Belfast and I’ll facilitate a meeting with former IRA prisoners and you can put your concerns to the homo-ified, feminised, Africanised and utterly corrupted former voluteers yourself.

    Paul – I don’t want any involvement in the sordid world that you inhabit. Hopefully, you would echo that.

  11. No problem Allan. Just keep pounding at the keyboard in the middle class oil money bunker vicariously living your wet dream, remotely funding others in the hope that they and not you will acheive your wet dream.

    You even lack the courage of your convictions so much that you refused to meet one of the more civilised, mild mannered, reasonable commentators here in your alleged home city.

    To use a Belfast colloquialism, a wannabe. A faceless irrelevance.

  12. Paul

    I don’t agree with all of your post but your central point is right. A no-deal Brexit will imperil the continued existence of the UK, and anyone who denies that is a blinkered fool.

  13. I also see that the Brexit Party overturned an 8,038 majority vote in the Brecon and Radnorshire by-election to beat previous Con MP Chris Davies by 1,425 votes. Well done to them:

    https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-wales-politics-49200636

    Whoops, did I say Brexit Party? I did of course mean the ardently pro – EU Lib Dems.

    So Johnson’s working majority in Parliament is to down to a wafer thin one. I wonder how a no confidence motion / No deal Brexit in October is looking now?

  14. // I did of course mean the ardently pro – EU Lib Dems. //

    The combined Brexit vote is down, but unfortunately not down as much as it should be.

    //So Johnson’s working majority in Parliament is to down to a wafer thin one. //

    Paul, do you not think that, in the light of this situation, the Shinners should take their seats in Westminster just this once to help prevent Brexit?

    They are putting principle before people. Including the interests of the people who voted for them.

  15. Paul, do you not think that, in the light of this situation, the Shinners should take their seats in Westminster just this once to help prevent Brexit?

    I have to admit I’ve thought about it Noel. I think it would set a precedent which would be used to batter SF from all sides and ultimately result in electoral deminishment if not complete suicide.

    ATM the answer would be a reluctant no but I’d maybe be open to persuasion after sitting down and having a look at how the stats correlate.

  16. Paul, if the people of both parts of Ireland would benefit from a firm spoke being put in BJs wheel, it could also lead to electoral loss for SF, but at the very least it’s grossly irresponsible.

    It means they are putting their own party’ interests (as you indicate) and their old principle before the interests of the people of Ireland.

  17. I vaguely agree Noel, hence the comment I’d maybe be open to persuasion after sitting down and having a look at how the stats correlate

    There’s also the argument that Brexit may lead to the re-unification of Ireland?

  18. If the boundary is moved to the Irish Sea there would be no need for a backstop and probably no need for a no-deal withdrawal. The only ones in the way of that are the DUP. There is rumor Boris is considering this option.