A personal response to the election result

Upddated 14 December: I allowed myself a rare personal opinion post the night before the election and so I’ll close the circle by posting my feelings now that the dust has settled a bit, and I’ve caught up with a bit of sleep! 

So, Mr Johnson, happy Christmas, do come in, and let me introduce you to reality …

Labour gone, at least for a generation, a year to negotiate future political and trading relationships with the EU or else face a WTO which the public think they want but don’t actually know the first thing about and which Donald Trump is, anyway, in the process right now, when he’s not being impeached, of breaking up …

Result of this is not, actually, likely to be a No Trade Deal cliff-edge on 31 Dec 2020 but a cave-in to EU negotiators along the lines of the WAB(BJ), a deal that was not “negotiated by the miracle negotiator in a month” but one that was already there, had already been presented, and rejected, as PotentialWAB(TM) before ActualWAB(TM) came into existence.

Either way, I think, from a residents’ rights/citizenship perspective, there’ll be a Withdrawal Agreement now so we, as third-country nationals in the EU won’t be suddenly in limbo, and ultimately, with the DUP hardly existing and the ERG as useful to Johnson now as a chocolate teapot, the deals will align the UK so closely with the EU that leaving will possibly hardly be noticeable.

The differences will be blue passports, loss of freedom of movement and influence within EU decision making that directly affects us, and the exchange of our paper Registros for a 3rd-country nationals’ plastic card, the TIE.

And there’s always the possibility that Guy Verhofstadt will re-present his “EU citizenship for Brits who want it in addition to British nationality” offer … and although that was offered to TM and rejected (I now understand), Johnson might not chuck it out of the window. His main thing, apparently, is wanting to be “liked”.

So after a bit of a rest from the fight we lost, and getting myself together and licking my wounds for 24 hours or so, I see room for optimism. Not for the United Kingdom, which I don’t think will be united for too much longer, nor for its economic or social well-being, but for us, as Brits in Spain. I think it could be OK … not as good as it has been perhaps, but OK.

Original post 11 December: For once, I’ll allow myself a personal and political post on this website. I normally try, I hope usually successfully, to post impartially and without partisanship. This General Election, however, is the most significant of my lifetime in terms of the future direction of the UK. As such, I urge everyone to vote to protect the country, its unwritten constitution developed through centuries, its NHS, its foreign workers, its homeless, its poor, its underprivileged, its hungry, its children’s future … and of course, those of us who remain British but who live in the EU, some of us victims of the Tories’ broken promises – yet more broken promises – to allow votes for life because being British lasts forever and wherever one is. Unless there’s a Tory Government.

The future of the United Kingdom is at stake. That is a future as a union with Scotland and Northern Ireland, its existence as a civilized, welcoming and open society, with an economically secure future in which the country can hold its head up internationally as a major leader in an increasingly fragile world for democracy, one in which the poor aren’t made pariahs for the simple benefit of billionaires, one in which children can expect hospital treatment without being kept for hours untreated on floors, one in which foodbanks are not needed because people are treated with dignity … all this depends on the Tories not being able to form a majority Government on Friday morning. 

For the sake of the future, of the country, and of yours and my children and grandchildren, never mind our own lives, please vote tactically in this election. Vote for anyone who will treat people as deserving human beings, and that means vote for anyone who will not be a representative of the most right-wing Conservative Party in years, a Party that has chucked out any semblance of humanity along with most of its MPs who were “centrists”. To avoid a return to the 1920s, which underpinned the horrors of the 1930s, please, for god’s sake, vote for change, whichever Party represents your best chance for change, and to reset the future and to stop it repeating itself. 

28 Comments

  1. Well said. Even Peter Osborne – a lifelong Conservative – is in agreement with you Janet

  2. Thanks Janet totally agree.

  3. The alternative is a marxist government whose leader and his momentum activists have destroyed the labour party. The agenda they have set out is fiscally ruinous and will take us back to the dark days of the winter of discontent.
    Businesses need clarity and the turmoil and uncertainty of a further referendum will cause even more damage.
    As a person who voted remain I believe it is time to move on from the paralysis that has beset our parliament – and that means respecting the result of the original referendum.
    Austerity was an unfortunate consequence of the financial crisis and that was not created by the Conservatives.
    We have to decide now who can best take us forward without offering spending plans that are fantasy economics.
    Many of us also remember what happens when nationalisation takes hold – unrealistic wage demands, strikes and rampant inflation with higher taxation.

  4. Thank you so much for sharing your views Janet, which have come across as heart felt.
    Would you mind if I shared this?

  5. Thank you Janet for sharing your insightful view on this important matter.

    Ashamedly, I am one of the many many hoodwinked people who voted to ‘leave’, but very quickly lost all respect for the result of the original referendum once ‘the truth and extent of the lies’ were revealed.

  6. Author

    No, I don’t mind at all, Christine!

  7. Thank you Janet for being the clear sane voice of wisdom, you’ve kept many a befuddled brain unfuddled during this surreal period in our history.

  8. I could not disagree more.
    Would you prefer a terrorist sympathiser who is only a short step away from being a full-blown communist to have the keys to 10 Downing Street? Now that is a frightening prospect.
    Not too mention their ridiculous spending pledges that would bankrupt the UK and scare business and investment, the UK would be cast back into the dark ages.
    I have lived in Tenerife for 16 years and have no intention of moving back to the UK. But I still care what happens to my country and the very real threat of a Labour/SNP is abhorrent.
    The only sensible and patriotic way forward is to vote Conservative.

  9. Thank you Janet for being brave enough to point out the truth. It’s nice to hear someone with a voice standing up against the lies the British people are being fed by the Tories.

  10. I have vote Tory all my life and I grew up despising labour and the unions in particular. But now we have populism which feeds on the lowest levels on disruption hatred and most despicably fear. It’s happening across the world and is loathsome and destructive. I do not like labours policies but at least JC is a human who cares for others albeit I would fear for the overall financials of the UK as a whole. So I have held my nose and voted for someone who has some decency.

  11. Totally agree Janet. I’ve lived here to long to be able to vote, but I think if I could, it would be a daunting prospect as none of the parties at this moment in time seem to me to be capable of running the country.

    The majority of my life I’ve been a conservative but I certainly wouldn’t vote for them this time around.

  12. I have no real faith in any of them to be honest but obviously I will not waste my vote. However, I do not think for one minute we would have ran 3 successful businesses under a Labour Government. Not a chance they would get my vote with that absolute lunatic running things! He’s dangerously clueless!

  13. Sorry to disagree with you Janet.
    Why do you think we have had austerity.
    It’s because of the last labour government.
    I do not think Boris is perfect but he is far better than someone who befriends the IRA and many other terrorists. It’s ok to promise funding for everything but to embark on the borrowing that would be needed is crazy.

  14. Wow. Look at the exit poll. Let’s wait and see.

  15. Fantastic post Janet, thank you. The exit polls though are devastating. It appears the liars have won, the gullible conned and the billionaires will remain in charge.
    Such a very sad projection. I fear massively for All especially my family and close friends. The NHS will suffer too, probably beyond recovery.
    A very sad night for the United Kingdom. The power of wealth and, the power of the press has beaten the power of truth and knowledge. The Daily Mail and The Sun readers regurgitating the nonsense they’ve been fed will be just too much to bear……………

  16. Janet
    You seem to be removing all posts that you don’t find suits your political tastes.Any reason ?

  17. Author

    Yes, they are insulting or abusive. Just look above. Several “disagree”, one in fact says they could not disagree more! I have no problem with that, but when comments tip over into insults or abuse they are removed or premoderated. For what it’s worth, though, I am not required to allow all comments. This is a private blog and I don’t actually have to allow any comments at all, or can restrict only to plaudits. I do not do that, but I will not be abused or insulted, and that applies anywhere, but especially on a website that I personally own, write and maintain. I hope that’s a clear explanation.

  18. I agree with your last post Janet. Free, open and respectful discussion is what we should encourage. We ought to be able to disagree and offer reasoned and structured opinions to support that disagreement, without resorting to personal or abusive comments.
    I find the comment from Ian saying, ‘the liars have won and the gullible conned’ unpleasant, but sadly this seems to be the way of the world in much of social media. I have many friends where we disagree vehemently on politics – but we always agree on the need for our views to be considered and respectful.
    The value of your site is to give information and allow interaction but you have an absolute right to moderate as you see fit – it is your domain, after all!

  19. So sorry Janet that you’ve had to put up with abuse for writing your opinion. It seems the way of the world that healthy discussion and debate quickly descends to nasty abuse.
    I hope your’re thick skinned enough to not take it personally and just brush it off.
    Many people love your blog. I personally check in every day to see what’s going on. We all appreciate the time you take in writing it and how you answer all our questions so quickly. Thank you.
    Congratulations on a brilliant site, keep up the good work.
    We love you Janet!

  20. Author

    Ah thank you, and Phillip, and others too. I don’t mention abuse to get sympathy but to explain why some comments have not appeared since that was challenged, and challenged in a way that implied I would not tolerate “dissent”. I have no problem as I say with differing opinions and several above do exactly that, but without descending into insulting language.

    In terms of the result, it is what it is. It is the last thing I wanted personally, but it is the result, and I think all Remainers have to acknowledge that there’s a fair likelihood, given last night’s results, that a second referendum would have resulted in a second Leave vote had we had one instead of a General Election.

    Now we live with it, and move on. I’m saddened beyond measure, and I expect no good to come of it, but hey ho, that’s the system we have … a system that needs significant modification in my opinion. Only yesterday I was reading a European politician (a national Parliament, I think Dutch) saying that in their country, with proportional representation, non-majority or coalition Governments were the norm. They weren’t “hung Parliaments” they were just “Parliament”. One day the UK might get with the programme … but by then it mightn’t be a “United” Kingdom any more anyway.

    Who knows, though, maybe the Leavers will be shown to be right. I will be very happy to be proven wrong should they be so. I doubt it but never say die …

  21. You make a good point Janet. Many European Countries operate systems where coalition governments are the norm because of the proportional representative way of voting. This means that parties have to work together in the national interest so the agendas tend to be more inclusive and centrist.
    Prior to 2010 our ‘first past the post’ system has traditionally produced majority governments (with a few exceptions in the 60’s and 70’s) and therefore the desire and propensity to work together has never materialised in our core political beliefs.
    The paralysation of Parliament over the past three years has polarised the fact that our politicians cannot reach consensus on the Brexit Issue.
    The referendum question was ill thought out and not made legally binding, which showed the arrogance of the political elite in believing the general public would vote for the status quo – this then opened a can of worms that has become emotive and caused division.
    However, we are where we are and I really hope now we can leave the EU with a deal that is beneficial to all of Europe and allows the UK to move on and deal with the issues that have been neglected over the past few years, the NHS being a prime example.
    Let’s put division behind us now and remember that we can have our national identity outside the EU but still have close ties with our European partners.
    If truth be known, the UK has always been an uncomfortable partner within the EU and we may now actually forge a closer and more beneficial relationship outside the block.

  22. Author

    Very well said, Phillip.

  23. As a northerner I have always felt pressure to vote Labour and why not they introducd the NHS, reduced child poverty, the unions etc. Labour has become corrupt and lost its morol values of helping those which derserve and equal oppurtunities. In 2006 Labour began to privatise our NHS they sold the dentisty industry to the highest bidder. Corbyn was insane and admired Venazuela! The truth is the politics talk about rebuilding what makes Britain´great again but in reality we already have it. We need to invest wisely and bring back community spirit. The poor 4 year old on the floor is not the fault of cuts, thats not true. It is the fault of a huge aging popilation and also overcrowding too many people the country if full, literally, and the NHS cannot cope under the strain. Schoolclasses are touch 40 with 1 teacher, for example. It is a relativly small island at what point do we say “well it might just be a Good idea to let the skilled workers in whom of which we require in abundance.” The unskilled migrants take the Jobs of deserving british workers the soul destroying horrific deminasation of unemployment. The NHS is so overstretched with pacients they now have to offer abortion advice over the phone, the the poor soul then goes and picks up her medicine and kills her baby at home. It is scandalous. No face to face advice, the staff are to busy. It is too easy to blame the cuts..i dont buy it. The NHS is crumberling and higher standards are important, lets hope Borris furfil his promeses. I hav looked at the data and in conclusión it seems promising he may.

  24. Blimey, sorry for being part of the ageing population.

  25. I really don’t understand the need for such a negative outburst? OK you aren’t happy with the result but you don’t actually live in the UK. I think saying you don’t see any optimism for those of us living in the UK is a bit aloof too. I’m pretty sure those of us who haven’t ran off abroad will deal with whatever happens in the UK. But one thing you cannot argue with is that there are a lot of people who voted Labour all their lives and voted Conservative for the first time due to Jeremy Corbyn being so disliked, unsellable and possibly would have been the worst person ever to lead the country! I think you have got a lot of people’s backs up with your comments to be honest.

  26. Author

    That’s fine, Craig. It’s my blog, my opinion, my comment – I don’t see it as a “negative outburst”. I do, however, see yours as one. I did not “run off abroad”, and it is insulting to refer in that way to a perfectly legal procedural right to retire within the European Union. And it is not “aloof” to say I fear for the future of the UK, and where I live is irrelevant. I am a British national and I do fear for what remains my own country wherever I live now that it is under the most rightwing Government in decades.

    In terms of “getting people’s backs up”, most publications have an editorial slant. I restrict mine because as a website for English-language readers, it has no specific political purpose, but given the importance of these events, I have lifted my own self-imposed restriction. Readers choose their media menu according to the congruence between their own views and that of their preferred press. I feel no “need” to “keep readers”. I have no “click to read” payment advantage, nor any advertisers. I get no money whatsoever for maintaining this website, which is purely for information for those who want it. Everyone is entirely free to find another publication more in line with their views if mine offend them but I am not about to fall into the elephant trap that caught the Labour Party, of futilely trying to placate all the irreconcilable factions, and keeping quiet altogether is no longer an option, in my opinion.

  27. Janet I have been a long time admirer of the fact that you have operated a website that has been informative and provided a service to ex-pats that, in all honesty, has been unrivalled in the Canary Islands.
    You have always reported on events in a factual and impartial manner, which I personally have preferred as you have not used your site as a vehicle to promote your personal views – something that is rare in this day and age.
    I absolutely understand your frustration at recent events but I fear you may be being tempted to allow emotion to overtake your editorial expertise.
    I am a semi- retired resident here and pay tax in both countries and am used to hearing, in the UK, ‘well you don’t live here now’ and in Tenerife, ‘you’re an ex-pat so why are you worrying.’
    Trust me Janet, you can’t win either way, but one thing for sure, is that tomorrow will follow today and we will get through all this – we have to accept the result of 12th and hope that just maybe a new dawn may emerge.

  28. Author

    Agreed, Phillip, and with that I’ll close this to comments now. As you say, tomorrow is another day. We all have to hope for the new dawn.

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