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Saturday, November 11, 2017

For whom the bell tolls

Like one of those fortune tellers who claim that they can predict the exact time and date of your death, the Government have determined that they will write into law that Brexit will take place irrevocably at 11pm on Friday 29th March 2019.

This is apparently an hour earlier than previously planned. Presumably, Ministers could not be certain that Big Ben's bongs would be around to toll us out of an institution that has brought us peace, stability and economic prosperity for nearly 45 years, longer if you count the years before we joined - 'Do not ask for whom the bell tolls'. What would John Donne have thought.

Quite how the Government can be so precise about this is puzzling. It's not as if the talks are going well, or that we are on course to get what we want from a Brexit deal. And doesn't the fact that they are going to inscribe the date on vellum, open up the possibility of amendments calling on the people to decide when and where we are ready (if at all) in a referendum, once they have considered all the details of any deal? I certainly hope so.

One cannot help but think that this latest caper is yet another sign of the fantasy world inhabited by the UK Government. Will Labour awaken them from their slumbers? The chances are that the official opposition will be lining up to plunge our economy into the abyss by endorsing the change to the Brexit Bill.

Perhaps we should put the fortune tellers in charge instead.
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