The Treasury is seeing fit to boast about its spending and apparently the magic money tree has produced anther £2billion to prepare for Brexit, which is a great comfort when the NHS is understaffed, they are cutting still more public health expenditure and we still have foodbanks. The Treasury further tell us that it has provided more than £4.2 billion for Brexit preparations since 2016. So at a total of £6.2billion, it has been estimated that is £230 for every UK household – all in a sterling effort towards the almost certain result of making ourselves poorer. A goal that only this government could wish for.
The Treasury have even produced an enchanting graphic (below) in which I’m fairly sure the Union Jack is upside down, which is surely nothing less than entirely appropriate.
The government said on Tuesday that it had sent letters to 140,000 businesses, urging them to trigger their no-deal contingency plans as appropriate. The government itself had no contingency plans before Tuesday – and precious few since – so why on earth are companies supposed to have no-deal contingency plans? Where is the money going to come from? For while we know the government has manufactured its own, business can’t and the economic outlook is so poor that extra expenditure on overheads is going to be far from welcome. It simply amounts to encouragement to shut up shop and move to somewhere with more certainty – like the European Union, for example.
We really do seem to have a government that thinks it was elected to inflict this chaos on the country it affects to govern. No wonder Mr Putin thinks Theresa May should hurry up to Brexit.
Then we have the new Immigration White Paper, which contains this gem: So our caring government is proposing an immigration policy that, by the government’s own admission, will make us all poorer. The White Paper at the same time estimates a reduction in tax receipts of £2-4 billion. When the Tories have been telling us that their overriding objective is to get the deficit down!
Our governments dystopic vision becomes even clearer now that Robert Peston tells us that “Officials at the Department for International Development, which isn’t much affected by Brexit in a direct sense, were told this morning that up to 600 of their number – out of just 3000 – may have to be redeployed to other departments that are suffering from staff shortages because of their Brexit workloads.”
I’m sure I will not be the first to suggest that they should have the ideal skills, used as they often are, to dealing with autocratic,corrupt and poverty-stricken banana republics. It is just that they’ll now have the opportunity to work in one.
And the UK is devoting these vast amounts of resources in order to leave a trading block a clear majority of us do not now want to leave anyway.
As one People’s Vote supporter (and previous Leave voter) has put it ‘When we voted leave, it didn’t mean of our senses’.
Sense and this government have of course, long been parted, but, like others, I also believe that this government in trying so often to ignore Parliament, is no longer democratic in intent. It acts in its own narrow power-preserving interests in preference to those of Parliament in general and the electorate in particular, whilst everywhere its policies continue to make that same electorate more and more impoverished.
It is no wonder it is the first UK government ever to have the ultimate accolade – to have been held in contempt of its own Parliament.
It is uniquely disturbing that it seems to matter not one jot.