As a EU resident who is a partner in several UK based businesses, the uncertainty over what's coming next is frightening. When I approached different colleagues, friends & family in the UK, they all had different views on what should happen. To an outsider, it looks like opinions have been polarised.
If you are managing a business that has ties to the UK there are very many unknowns right now. It's a lot easier to plan for the worst than it is to take risks IMHO. Brexit must ultimately hurt the UK economy in some way – jobs lost, money flowing out of the country, talented people leaving?
Now Nigel (fucking) Farage is calling for a 2nd referendum. You can't make this shit up.
I can't decide if Brexit is good or bad for the UK. On the one hand, there's the common market and freedom of movement. On the other there's Germany's dominance and lots of fragile banks.
What would be worse, losing access to the free market or being around if the banks fail? Or would being outside the market make a difference if Deutsche Bank failed?
I kind of feel the whimper came before Christmas, in the talks discussing Northern Ireland and the status of the border there between the UK and Europe. I can't remember the details exactly but the Good Friday Agreement  provided a constitutional footing whereby the UK effectively gave an undertaking to abide by the rules of the EU trade area, while not being a member of the EU trade area.
This to prevent the erection of a "hard border" (i.e. one you couldn't freely traverse without a Visa) which would be required as a customs barrier, rather than for security.
This agreement completely undermines a lot of the wackier ideas around free trade that have been floating around and defangs some of the nastier aspects of brexit.
The UK is still free to set her own internal monetary and social policy but she's effectively bound to EU trade rules, and the EU of course must consult her in setting these.
It's an epic compromise on both sides that basically allows for a continuation of business as usual without undermining the "brexit means brexit" doctrine.
A lovely example of how peace once established can be the gift that keeps giving.
Amazing how small errors in a text start to degrade your confidence in the content. At the outset the sentences are clear and mostly correct. As it goes on small errors start to appear and occasionally the entire meaning of a sentence becomes unclear. By the end, reading his slightly dramatic flourish, you get the feeling that he wrote with some emotion and wasn't tending to the language very carefully.
On the one hand you can say these are merely typos. On the other you could say they reflect a lack of clarity, a lack of care. I know I find it hard to ignore.
He's got a point. It's surprised me how many small day-to-day decisions made by management are because of Brexit.
Will the UK still participate in the GDPR after Brexit? Are there plans to write up something similar?
> the EU is calling the shots in these negotiations
> a deal that kept the UK in the Customs Union and Single Market for goods, but not for services.
The EU (which is calling the shots) has repeatedly said that the Four Freedoms are inseparable. So such a deal seems unlikely.
Yes, that's a fair assessment.
It's hard to imagine how this whole situation could have been fucked-up to a greater extent. I'm a solid supporter of remaining in the EU, but I'm open-minded to the idea that an orderly Brexit could have been planned and executed, with the public being aware of the various trade-offs. A single market on one hand, balanced against free movement and regulatory harmonisation on the other.
But that discussion didn't happen. There was literally no coherent concept in the public sphere about what the goals of Brexit where, or what the desired end state was – and there still isn't. Obviously to some extent because the outcome was unexpected, but that doesn't excuse the ongoing incompetence and failure to be realistic on the behalf of the UK government. Various government ministers continue to be frankly fucking deluded about what they are trying to achieve – in a way that I have to assume that they are deliberately lying. There is still no coherent government policy on what Brexit actually is, and no corresponding public idea of that either.
This is in stark contrast to the Scottish independence referendum in 2014 – though I was on the 'yes' side then. I have a book published by the Scottish government sitting on my bookshelf, which outlines in decent detail the plans and desired outcomes if independence was chosen. Not that all of that would come to pass, or would even be possible, but even to have a stated government plan is light-years ahead of what is happening at the UK level. It's almost criminally irresponsible.
Worse, there is no obvious out – either a reversal of this policy, or any sign of a government that can realistically set out what it wants to achieve. The main opposition party is weak and equally committed to Brexit, and with the leader of the opposition being the only realistic figure around which support could coalesce, there is limited room for manoeuvre.
Now we see the fallout – not in the short term, but taking a longer view. I've had people explicitly tell my startup that they are no longer funding in the UK because they "have no idea what's going to happen". It's become much harder to hire EU-based workers, because of course they have no idea what their position will be in a couple of years. I have watched a number of talented friends and contacts move away from the UK, because they can't really be bothered with this nonsense. In the long-term, this cack-handed mismanagement is going to be another bullet point in the long and slow decline of the UK. It's not like the world is going to end – it's just that everything is going to be a bit shittier.
I know that's a bit of a rant, but it's utterly frustrating to deal with from inside the UK when so many are currently banging on about how good it's great to be to have a different fucking colour of passport.
This seems speculative and it effectively posits a worst-of-all-worlds situation resulting - one if which the UK is half inside the single market.
Half inside such that it allows the flow of goods (the UK is a net importer) but not services (which we net export). This would be untenable, worse than a no-deal situation. And the basis of this speculation is that the EU is holding all the cards. I'm really not convinced this is true.
The article reads a little bit like a remain fantasy - Brexit will be a disaster and then people must come around to my way of thinking! The problem with that analysis is that in your way of thinking it was likely unimaginable that the Brexit vote would go through in the first place. And then we heard that no PM would ever actually action it, and then that no Parliament would allow it. None of which has really panned out.
--edit-- I'd love to reply to more of the comments below, but I appear to be rate-limited. Never mind then...
this euro currency is set to die. The only question is WHEN. Unfortunately, economists are not the ones to decide, but the only politicians are. And people vote ignorant politicians and talk about macro-economy like they do on football matches. In the long run, Brexit will be a GOOD thing for the British but for the wrong reason (xenophobia).
A real shame that Oxford decided to name their department after an oligarch who expropriated huge wealth out of Russia . Sad to admit I consider any position associated with the Blavatnik name tainted.