Why am I surprised? Racism is out the bag.

There was a pro-remain event on in Trafalgar Square tonight and I did not attend. I was simply on my way home – to be honest it was not brilliantly attended (think it was raining).

I was walking down the tube when I noticed a noisy couple walking down the street. The male started shouting “immigrants out, f*** off out my country, build a wall”. Someone tried to calm him – clearly not British but neither were they at event and the guy just kept shouting at him. It almost got to blows.

Remain/don’t remain doesn’t matter – for the moment the conservatives are not changing direction so what does any non racist supporter of leave have to fear nothing! Profanities, expletives and racism has no place here but it is rearing its ugly head! I have not since I was a teenager seen such direct and open abuse based on creed/nationality.

I don’t think any genuine voter would act like that individual and it is not fair to tarnish any side with his bigoted views. He was hiding behind the vote but nothing to do with it.

The thing that shocks me the most is I talk a good game but did not confront him myself. 

He was not a thug and was dressed smartly. Something is very wrong and I am very sad. I have seen it on social media and slowly coming out directly but London and this country is divided.

I hope our politicians start to give us some leadership soon or something bad will happen and more people will be hurt.

PS for those seeing this on Facebook we do need to get back to fun book but as I say this has nothing to do with politics.

Article 50 – how can it be enforced?

I have read article 50 and I have read legislation on referendums. I am clear that any referendum is only advisory. A member state enacts article 50 think parliament must vote in my opinion or it could probably be challenged through the courts. Is this correct? We’re all sides misinformed?

I get the point that referendums give an indication of electorate sentiment but even the electoral commission states that they should unequivocal and 52/48 would not be legally deemed to be so based on international precedent.

So in case you are interested Article 50 is below. Go to the electoral commission website where there is a 200 page document looking at the merits of referendums.


Article 50

1. Any Member State may decide to withdraw from the Union in accordance with its own constitutional requirements.

2. A Member State which decides to withdraw shall notify the European Council of its intention. In the light of the guidelines provided by the European Council, the Union shall negotiate and conclude an agreement with that State, setting out the arrangements for its withdrawal, taking account of the framework for its future relationship with the Union. That agreement shall be negotiated in accordance with Article 218(3) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. It shall be concluded on behalf of the Union by the Council, acting by a qualified majority, after obtaining the consent of the European Parliament.

3. The Treaties shall cease to apply to the State in question from the date of entry into force of the withdrawal agreement or, failing that, two years after the notification referred to in paragraph 2, unless the European Council, in agreement with the Member State concerned, unanimously decides to extend this period.

4. For the purposes of paragraphs 2 and 3, the member of the European Council or of the Council representing the withdrawing Member State shall not participate in the discussions of the European Council or Council or in decisions concerning it.

A qualified majority shall be defined in accordance with Article 238(3)(b) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

5. If a State which has withdrawn from the Union asks to rejoin, its request shall be subject to the procedure referred to in Article 49.

#ProjectReality #Did that just happen

I’ve never blogged, I’ve never felt strongly about much, I’d heard of tumblr and wordpress but kept my ranting to Twitter and Facebook but think people on FB are starting to worry about me and find my posts a little too long. I know let’s go for a wider audience…..

So, there’s a petition out there on the https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/131215 that’s now reached almost 2.85m votes. This is the unenchanted British voter I hear you ask that has galvanised itself online to scream and shout that quite possibly I think we’ve made a big mistake.

I’ve had “leavers” accuse me of being undemocratic because we’ve had a vote which those that want to remain in the EU have lost.

So, what is a democracy? “a system of government in which all the people of a state or polity … are involved in making decisions about its affairs, typically by voting to elect representatives to a parliament or similar assembly”, as defined by the Oxford English Dictionary

So back in 2015 Messrs Clegg and Cameron took a hop, skip and a jump into the first post coalition election. Mr Cameron promised a referendum but did not define anything under law nor even state what the question would be.

I have also come to realise that far from being democratic and delivering one of the world’s most stable constitutional democracies we’ve created and perpetuated disenfranchisement of the electorate, creation of an out of touch political elite and a highly fractious society where tolerance is being tested across all levels of society.

Of an electorate of 46 million people entitled to vote we had a 66% turnout. Of that 66% – 11.3 million people delivered a Conservative party majority. Are you telling me that the other 19.3 million people that voted did not elect this government. Seems about right.

I know some UKIP supporters would argue that they just about got you there but in many areas there policy intentions are very different. Whilst I was happy at the time they have so little direct political influence I think we would be better off with proportional representation where one vote counts as much as anyone else’s.

It seems absurd to me that we move to this sort of system for what it the most important decision we’ve made as an electorate in a generation. It’s not insulting to say let’s learn to walk before we can run.

And now, the labour party is starting to implode, the man that promised us that he would steer us through this come what may has gone, Scotland wants to leave the union to stay in the union, and NI/Ireland run the risk of being pushed back decades. Did anyone for see this? Are we gaining more control or less?

I think we need to take a step back. Boris Johnson sold a message of hope – that of course we’d be fine on our own. Well let’s reverse it and say – with hope, tenacity and being a little bit pushy with our European colleagues we’ll be far better off in than out. We’ll sell them a vision that things can be different and can be better.

They’ve had the shot across their bow and now they must listen. With populist anti-European sentiment growing across Europe it must be time to step up and not step out.

We elected our parliament to set our laws, this vote was only advisory in nature, and parliament can oppose it.

Let’s have another referendum where we ask the question “Do you want to leave the EU so that Scotland leaves the UK, NI/Ireland potentially go backwards, immigration will not go down, we won’t gain that much control because we’ll be signing new international agreements (think TTIP), and if none of the above happened then yes maybe just maybe there will be a shot period of uncertainty?”