IEA: Brexit Britain Should Commit to Unilateral Free Trade

Guido hears today’s new Institute of Economics Affairs report on trade policy has been well-received by ministers. It argues that no deal with the EU on trade would not be a disaster for the UK, recommending Britain commits to a policy of unilateral free trade with the rest of the world, eliminating all barriers to imports regardless of whether other countries impose tariffs on their imports from the UK. It would then be up to the EU if it wanted to impose tariffs, which would hurt EU consumers by raising prices. In such a scenario, the IEA report concludes the UK would likely be given tariff free access to the single market:

“There are many myths being perpetuated about trade policy – and more specifically about the UK’s relationship with the EU – that must be debunked. Many people believe that disaster will befall us if we do not forge a deal with the EU. In fact, we could unilaterally eliminate all import tariffs, which would give us most of the benefits of trade, and export to the EU under the umbrella of the WTO rules. Then we can seek free trade deals with all major trading partners, including the EU.”

If a bad deal is offered by the EU, the UK should say thanks but no thanks, walk away and unilaterally set tariffs at zero…

Friday Caption Contest (Slow Clap Edition)

Entries in the comments…

Second LibDem MP Faces Election Expenses Questions

The Scottish papers think they are onto something with LibDem expenses at this year’s election. Yesterday the Herald accused Jo Swinson of omitting thousands of pounds worth of claims from her expenses return, which if declared would have put her over the limit. Today they are going after new LibDem MP Christine Jardine, claiming voters were sent personalised mail which was not accounted for in her spending return, and that if she had declared this £3,000 of expenditure in her local spend she would have bust her limit by £1,350. The LibDems are protesting their innocence, as they did before they were given the maximum fine by the Electoral Commission after the 2015 election. Expect more LibDem names to come out in the next few days…

UKIP Leadership Hopeful: Pay British Indians £12 Billion to Leave UK

It won’t come as a surprise to anyone following the career of UKIP leadership nut John Rees Evans to learn he isn’t the sharpest tool in the box. Rees Evans’ latest big idea, when he’s not talking about gay donkey rapeor stalking the streets like a madman, is to pay British Indians £12 billion to leave the country. UKIP struggling for relevance these days.

H/T Mirror

UPDATE: Rees Evans is condemned by his UKIP leadership rival Peter Whittle, who tweets: “No! This is utterly and entirely wrong”.

Leanne Wood Blindly Speculates During Barcelona Attack

This was Plaid Cymru leader Leanne Wood and occasional leftie TV debate favourite Leanne Wood posting blind speculation as the attack in Barcelona unfolded:

When it became apparent that it was Islamic extremists, Leanne doubled down:

Would have been better to just step away from the keyboard.

Corbyn: Wrong to Say There is a British-Pakistani Grooming Problem

Jeremy Corbyn has asked been by the BBC if he thinks there is a particular problem with British-Pakistani men grooming girls:

BBC: “Do you not think there’s a particular problem with Pakistani men, because we’ve seen in Rochdale, we’ve seen in Rotherham, in Newcastle and Oxford, that’s been the problem.”

Corbyn: “The problem is the crime that’s committed against women from any community. Much crime is committed by white people, crime is committed by people of other communities as well. I think it is wrong to designate an entire community as a problem.”

He should listen to the words of Muslim Labour candidate Amina LoneYou’d have thought Labour would have learned about shutting down this debate…

Swinson in Trouble Over “Vanishing” Election Expenses

Here we go again… LibDem Jo Swinson is feeling the heat north of the border after thousands of pounds were apparently left off her election expenses declaration. The Herald reports Swinson claimed her spending had come in £210 below the limit, but only after £7,000 worth of claims were left undeclared. Swinson says money was spent on items that were never used so she didn’t declare it – other claims were declared as national spend in a move reminiscent of Nick Clegg’s controversial election expenses last time round. One to watch, who’s up for another summer of election fraud stories?

Nick Timothy’s Lessons From Yanis

Those Tories uncomfortable with Nick Timothy’s more statist policy platform will be amused to see he is a disciple of Yanis Varoufakis. The book beardless Timothy is reading is the Greek firebrand’s “My Battle with Europe’s Deep Establishment”. Nick was one of the leading Brexiters in the government before he quit, no doubt he and Yanis have some shared experiences…

People’s March For Europe: Theresa May Must Explain Chappers’ Deleted Twitter

This press release has just been sent out by the People’s March for Europe, the organisers of the hotly anticipated James Chapman rally launching his anti-Brexit ‘The Democrats’ party.. They are claiming “James Chapman’s twitter account has been hacked and suspended without his permission… We demand an immediate and full explanation from the Prime Minister and the Secretary of the Cabinet, Sir Jeremy Heywood”. Guido has called them up – they won’t say if Chappers wrote, authorised or has even seen the press release. Are they really claiming that the PM or Cabinet Secretary has silenced Chapman’s tweeting? This could be bigger than Watergate*…

*Chappers did also tweet that he was “lashed” about 4 a.m. local time after saying hello to Vladimir Putin.

UPDATE: The account is back up!

Muslim Labour Candidate: Champion is Brave Not Racist

As virtue-signalling offence-taking Corbynistas succeed in getting Sarah Champion kicked out of the Shadow Cabinet, worth listening to (non-practicing) Muslim Labour candidate Amina Lone on Newsnight. She says Champion has been “used as a scapegoat” and was “an easy target“. Lone, whose was born to Pakistani parents, says she is “despairing” about Champion’s resignation because these “difficult conversations” need to be had. She says on Twitter:

“I grew up in a Muslim community where these attitudes were common. “White girls are easy” “Nobody cares about them” “They are just slags” “They parents don’t look after them properly” etc were/are still said today. I hear it regularly. Sarah Champion was talking about a particular type of grooming which is carried by men because of their cultural/religious practices. Obvs not all men. She is not a racist but a brave woman speaking out about a politically awkward issue. Labour, bury your heads as much as you like in the black & white purist world you push. The chickens will come home to roost.”

Will any Labour politician dare to speak out about this important issue following Champion’s sacking? This is a dangerous precedent…

Chappers Account Deleted

Overnight James Chapman’s Twitter account was deleted. He sent over 500 manic tweets yesterday and was calling mainstream politicians and journalists “Nazis” into the early hours, admitting he was “lashed“. He even threatened to “shove” Theresa May “into the sea“. Hopefully James can now take a break from Twitter and get help. Shame on the journalists and Remainers who egged him on despite the genuine warnings from his friends.

UPDATE:

Vince Cable: I’m Not Supporting Chapman

This afternoon James Chapman claimed Vince Cable will be helping him launch his new party:

It’s news to Vince. A LibDem spokesman says Cable may attend anti-Brexit events but will not have anything to do with ‘The Democrats’:

“There is no question whatsoever of Vince Cable supporting the launch of a new party, as James Chapman is suggesting. A new party is completely unnecessary.”

During literally hundreds of non-stop tweets today Chapman has repeatedly called Theresa May and his former boss David Davis “Nazis“. He has also had an interview with Channel 4 News cancelled diplomatically for “technical reasons”. Don’t say we didn’t warn you. Journalists and Remainers enabling this single-sourced nonsense need to take a look in the mirror…

Sarah Champion Resigns From Shadow Cabinet

Earlier Sarah Champion tried to distance herself from that article in The Sun, only for Guido to reveal leaked emails showing she wasn’t being entirely honest. A Labour source tells Guido Champion is resigning from the Shadow Cabinet. Corbynista social justice warrior pressure pays off…

UPDATE: Champion says in a statement that she is quitting: “I apologise for the offence caused by the extremely poor choice of words in The Sun article on Friday.” So they were her words after all…

May: Big Ben Bong Ban Wrong

Theresa May says the ban on Big Ben bonging is wrong. Jeremy Corbyn on the other hand sides with health and safety:

“If we have to miss Big Ben in reality for a while so that work can be done, well, that’s something we have to go through. It’s not a national disaster or catastrophe.”

Big Ben is still bonging but it’s a quiet day in Westminster…

Headline courtesy of @ConorPope

Sarah Champion Was “Thrilled” With Her Sun Article

Sarah Champion is under pressure from Corbynistas on Twitter demanding that she is sacked from her Shadow Cabinet job over her article in The Sun last week:

“Britain has a problem with British Pakistani men raping and exploiting white girls. There. I said it. Does that make me a racist? Or am I just prepared to call out this horrifying problem for what it is.”

To save face with outraged lefties, Champion is putting it about that her words were stripped of all nuance and that she didn’t write the opening sentences. Sun sources insist Champion was not only sent the subbed text, she was sent the hard copy of the page (above) and raised no objections.

In fact her personal assistant emailed the paper the day following the article’s publication to say that Champion was “thrilled with it”:

Date: 11 August 2017 at 10:40
Subject: RE: Sarah’s piece

She is absolutely thrilled with it – just gone to get some hard copies. However, she is mortified that you’ve used such an ancient picture of her – it is about five years old! I sent some newer ones last summer to the picture desk and am attaching them again here. Please can you send them on to the relevant person. Thanks, x

Champion has said what is the obvious truth about rape gangs – her personal assistant’s only complaint before the Corbynistas got involved was that the picture of her used was old. Only when social justice warriors started shrilly tweeting calls for her to resign did Champion seek to disown the article… 

Tories Queue Up to Blast Trump

May on Trump:

“I see no equivalence between those who propound fascist views and those who oppose them. I think it is important for all those in positions of responsibility to condemn far right views wherever we hear them.”

Other Tory MPs and ministers have been somewhat more direct:

Can’t wait for the state visit…

Unemployment Rate Lowest Since 1975

Worth keeping on about this. During the referendum Osborne and the Treasury said unemployment would rise by 500,000 in the immediate aftermath of a Leave vote. Today’s new figures:

  • Unemployment fell 57,000 between April and June 2017
  • 157,000 fewer than for a year earlier
  • Unemployment rate is 4.4%
  • Down from 4.9% for a year earlier
  • The lowest since 1975

It was a big fat fib…

Transition Must Be Short Enough to Keep UK Appealing to New Trade Partners

As Guido reported yesterday morning, most Leave Tory MPs are on board with David Davis’ customs union plan. The influential European Research Group of 80+ Tory Brexiteers last night gave their blessing to the “welcome” proposal. What Leave MPs do want is for the transition period to be as short as possible. Leave Tories have indicated they support a time-limited transition completed by the next election, though they would obviously prefer it lasted closer to 1-2 years than 3. They have several arguments for this. One, the transition phase must be short enough to keep the UK appealing to new trade partners – a very important point which is being argued by Leave MPs at the moment. Two, it must be strictly time-limited and short enough to allay concerns it could be used to keep the UK in the EU by the back door. Three, Tory MPs believe it is vital voters see as much progress as possible on the results of Brexit, on immigration and new trade deals, before the next election. As we said yesterday, that means the transition finishing with time to spare…

This is the latest “Cabinet row erupts” story in the papers. When you consider previous “splits” on the single market, customs union etc, a debate boiling down to a matter of a few months is relatively small fry. As Guido has said for some time, there is a broad Cabinet consensus on the trajectory of the Brexit process – Stephen Pollard is worth a read on this today. It is nonetheless important for Leave MPs to keep up the pressure on the length of the implementation phase. The shorter the transition the better it is for trade deals, and the less likely it is for Britain to stay in the EU by the back door…

Concerns Raised About Chappers

James Chapman’s painful live-tweeted breakdown is the subject of growing concerns among his friends in Westminster. It is not hard to understand why Chapman is anguished. He was being eased out of the Daily Mail pol-ed role when he took up Osborne’s offer to spin for him. That’s the source of his surprisingly vicious animus against Dacre. He haughtily told everyone on the way out of Northcliffe House that he would be in No. 10 in due course, lording it over them when Osborne ascended to the premiership. Things did not quite work out that way.

For some time after Osborne’s sacking he was in limbo, eventually taking the role with David Davis at DExEU for which he was so unsuited. He then became a partner at lobbyists Bell Pottinger, his ability as a lobbyist counselling clients specifically on Brexit may be a little hindered by his very public and frequent meltdowns where he has attacked almost all the people clients might hope he had some influence with; government ministers, newspaper editors, not to mention influential journalists who write about his clients. His Trumpish tweets are not a conventional method of communication for usually discreet lobbyists. Never mind his publicly stated plans to set up a new party and stand for it at a by-election. Clients might see that as compromising his counsel and judgement just a teensy weensy bit.

On Facebook and Instagram there have been grim late night posts – subsequently deleted. Chapman was escorted out of parliament a few weeks ago after a particularly drunken episode. He has abused those who have tried to reason with him. All this has been an open secret in SW1 for weeks. His shouty crackers performance on the Today Programme brought it all into the open for the wider public. He has also to some extent gone public himself with his hundreds of round-the-clock tweets. Today he has flipped out with David Davis when only recently he told everyone he was on good terms with him. He’s demanded an emergency recall of parliament and challenged the PM to a public debate in Parliament Square, last week he claimed cabinet members were on the verge of defecting to his party. He’s called for Brexit-supporting publications to be shut down. He sometimes asks people like JK Rowling and Hillary Clinton to follow him on Twitter so he can directly message them. His tweets suggest that in his mind he thinks he is Britain’s answer to Macron leading his own party, “The Democrats”. We’ll pass over the naked Instagram selfies. In all this he is being egged on by idiots on Twitter, every bit of praise and support feeding into his mania.

Some former colleagues are going public, most are keeping their counsel private:

Many, many Remainers are in James’ mentions as well telling him to take a break from Twitter for his own sake. Sadly James can only see conspiracy:

These fears would explain why David Davis stopped short of kicking him too hard this morning. It’s sad to watch.

Labour’s Shadow Trade Minister Staggeringly Clueless on Customs Union

It’s hardly a surprise when a Labour spokesman goes on the airwaves to talk about Brexit and doesn’t have the first clue.[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

Jeremy Corbyn on Big Ben Bong Ban

“… if we have to miss Big Ben in reality for a while so that work can be done, well, that’s something we have to go through. It’s not a national disaster or catastrophe.”

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