Brexit, it’s behind you… or sadly not

BREXIT rears its ugly head in this year’s panto at York Theatre Royal when David Leonard’s baddie makes a joke about getting back control or something.

The reaction from last Friday’s press night audience was interesting: loud cheers from a small number of Daily Express readers (I’m guessing here) and dark muttering from the balding Guardian reader in the front row of the dress circle.

That’s the thing about Brexit – it’s so divisive, more divisive than anything else I can remember; and I can remember Margaret Thatcher, for heaven’s sake.

This morning’s papers have a bit of Brexit – Brexit before breakfast, after breakfast and with every other bite take throughout the day. A stomach full of indigestible Brexit.

If you believe the papers, we are a nation obsessed with Brexit, waiting the latest news as if hanging on the result of Strictly or the FA Cup final.

In truth, and a sensible step away from the political obsessives, most people are surely bored out of their heads already. They’re either thinking, “Hasn’t that happened yet?” or “Tell me again, what is Brexit thing I might have voted for?”

The Sunday sisters of the Brexit-bonkers Express and Telegraph roll out their coverage this morning with Mrs Maybe saying: “MAY: I WON’T BE DERAILED” and the less shouty: “May: I’ve proved doubters wrong.”

Well, you pays your money and takes your choice of Brexit bullshit, I guess. To this doubter, Mrs Maybe hasn’t proved anyone wrong, apart from those of us who thought she’d be ready to be covered in marmalade by now.

All she’s done is agree to start debating about an agreement, on exactly the terms the other members of the EU said she would have to accept. All those shouty months we endured to reach that point was just different parts of the Conservative Party engaged in an unbrotherly scrum.

True, some Labour supporters, mostly those at the far left of the Battered Ballroom of British Politics, think the EU is a capitalist plot anyway. That’s partly why Jeremy Corbyn’s position on Brexit is ambiguous and mostly consists of sitting back and watching the different Tory factions tear lumps out of each other.

In the more sensible confines of The Observer, Tory peers are reported to be telling Mrs Maybe to “Call off the Brexit bullies or face defeat”. The peers fear they are being bullied into accepting a harsh form of Brexit – which they almost certainly are.

Over in The Sunday Times, Boris Johnson is given an airing – the last thing that egotistical poltroon needs – under the headline: “Boris: Brexit mustn’t leave us a ‘vassal state’”.

Not sure I’ve ever seen those words in a splash headline before, but there you go. What the Dreadful One means is that we shouldn’t be separate from Europe but still ruled by Europe, or that’s my guess.

The frankly appalling Jacob Rees-Mogg – part Tory MP, part unfunny character in a PG Wodehouse story – is also banging on about how we mustn’t become a “colony” of the EU, according to the BBC website.

Here’s the thing: the Brexit Batshit Brigade got what they wanted, which was a vote to leave Europe. And they’re still moaning, still obsessing about how they are going to be diddled somehow on the march to their tatty Nirvana. You’ve got what you want on Planet Mogg, so why not just pipe down.

Brexit is coming (whatever exactly Brexit is). The process will be long and unendurably boring. And one day, in 20 years or 30 years perhaps, we might know whether we took the right decision. Until then mostly it will all be hot and contaminated air.

One comment

  1. It says a lot about British diplomacy at the moment that the Foreign Secretary thinks a word like “vassal” with all its mediaeval connotations is appropriate when talking about our relationships with the rest of the world. Even the Victorians preferred the word “colonial”

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