If the EU wanted to project cohesion, competence and credibility they would ‘t try to jack up the Brexit bill from €52bn to €100bn. Are EU leaders unaware that they’ve suffered 15 straight losses out of 15 referendums, 100% success record in votes of no confidence yet here they are trumpeting their supposed financial acumen. They’ve had almost 12 months to work out a thoroughly researched punitive sum for the U.K. yet they can’t help playing bureaucratic Brexit bingo. A doubling of a Brexit bill in the space of a month only confirms there is no scienctific basis for the fine. It is now nothing more than a bitter divorce where the estranged wife is going for the hubby’a ‘ jugular. If the EU understood the Brits they’d realize it is one of the few nations whose citizens will tell them directly what they think. Brits hate being told what to do.
However isn’t the UK a shareholder in all of the assets, buildings and infrastructure in the EU having invested over GBP 200bn net during its membership? Shouldn’t the EU have to buy out the UK’s stake in the project?
The EU is now dictating the UK can’t discuss potential trade deals with other countries while the exit process is ongoing. Are they mad? They are now saying that Gibraltar gives Spain the right to veto any trade deal with the UK. The UK is being treated like a hostage with a ransom note being sent to the Queen.
Article 50 must have been written in such a way that they never thought it would be triggered. Moreover it was probably drafted in crayon. Now that it has been set off the Eurocrats are showing their true colours and likely to hand Theresa May an even bigger mandate. What they don’t realize is the more bullying from Brussels that transpires the more it accelerates their ultimate demise.
It is the ultimate hubris. Even if Le Pen loses this weekend she is likely to scoop 40% of the vote. Her father achieved a best ever result of 16.9% in the second round. While celebrations might abound with a Macron victory, a strong showing by Le Pen doesn’t remove the underlying shift toward parties which demand change. This is what the EU keeps missing. The Dutch election saw Wilders one of the few parties to gain seats. Right wing parties took most of the gains.
The EU has no choice but to reform but stiff arming the U.K. sends hugely negative messages to member states. While the EU thinks it’s actions will prevent further risk of leavers, the reality is a growing number of citizens are happy to risk it.
Let’s be sure to remind ourselves that the €100bn bar tab won’t be the last number to flash across 10 Downing Street. As it stands Theresa May only needs to tell Juncker, Tusk and Verhofstadt that the cheque is in the mail.