BREXIT: who will feel the pain?

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Would the UK leaving the EU be good for the south of Ireland?

It depends on who you ask. Some experts will say that of course it will: foreign direct investment will be attracted to the south because it will then be the only English-speaking EU state, with Britain’s departure. The south of Ireland would welcome  those big international companies and they would welcome a toe-hold in the EU. The south also has corporation tax at 12.5%,  seen as such a crucial advantage that some southern politicians believe Ireland should leave the EU before allowing the 12.5% to be altered by Brussels or anyone else.

On the other hand, the UK leaving  the EU presents the south with a massive problem: how to maintain and develop the huge amount of Every day some 30,000 people cross our invisible border, many involved in cross-border business. In addition to the damage done to trade, BREXIT may well create an immigrant problem for the south and the north. People fleeing war and poverty have gathered in their thousands at Calais, desperate to make it to Britain; won’t it be logical that in the event of BREXIT occurring, thousands would congregate along the border between south and north? The rabbit-warren of routes across our border is much more susceptible to penetration by immigrants than the English Channel.

Mixed in with these contradictory analyses is the politics of it all. Irish nationalists and republicans see the current opposition in the north to BREXIT as an opportunity for unionists to consider again the argument for national reunification. On the other hand DUP head honchos like Sammy Wilson and party leader Arlene Foster are emphatic that the BREXIT vote underlines how we are part of Britain and the emergence of increased British nationalism will cement that union. Remember, Sammy has for decades been saying there’s not a drop of Irish blood in his body.

So who’s right? The truth is we don’t know. Nobody knows. A great number of people in the UK – I would say a majority, now that the British people are beginning   to see the effect that even planning a BREXIT is having on the market – most of those in the UK, not just in Scotland and the north of Ireland, regret the vote that looks set to take the UK out of the EU. Perhaps their fears will be ill-founded. Perhaps the massive savings from not having to pump £350 million a week ( or was it just a random sum written on the side of a bus by Boris?) – perhaps that’ll lead to a flourishing of trade in Britain while the EU slowly disintegrates and the south comes knocking, begging to be allowed back into the British club.

Maybe. And maybe Nelson McCausland will be a key member of the British gymnastics team in Rio this summer.

22 Responses to BREXIT: who will feel the pain?

  1. Gc1888 July 6, 2016 at 9:01 am #

    If it’s verbal gymnastics Britain has an assured gold.

  2. jessica July 6, 2016 at 9:37 am #

    Personally, I cant see a situation where England will not have access to the single market which is more important than membership of the EU to its economy.

    But until this arrangement is sorted, there will be instability in the markets and a lot of confusion with a growing potential of social unrest as there is so much speculation and misinformation going around.

    So long as the EU pursues a single super state, a single army and continues its expansion eastward, I cannot support it regardless of the economic difficulties as I can only see it as dividing the world into an east west super block of division that will inevitably end up in war as it has done before.

    If the EU can reform and return back to its original form of cooperation between individual nations, then there is a degree of unity that is positive ad perhaps we are not yet past the point of no return.

    Though it doesn’t look good at the moment.

    Germany wants to make an example of the UK so no other nations don’t think about following them out, there will be no formal negotiations before article 50 is activated. The UK doesn’t even have a leader.

    The longer this goes on, the more short term harm will be done to the economy and the closer we will get to all out economic war between the EU and Britain.

    The EU desperately need the £230 million each week from the UK and they will react immediately if they don’t get it.

    If this happens, it will lead to a further drop in the UK economy and actions which will be damaging to Ireland.

    I imagine immigrants will not be kicked out, but they will take a tough line especially against those resident less than 4 years and who have insufficient skills at speaking English.

    Germany are already doing likewise and will are offering German citizenship to UK nationals who have been in the country for 8 years (I think it is) and can speak the language.

    Britain is already lowering its corporation tax, which will counter much of that foreign direct investment from being attracted to the south you refer to but more to stem the drift to the EU?

    This will be reduced even lower again as part of the economic warfare with the EU which will hurt it and escalate things yet again.

    The EU will expel the UK from the single market completely and add Tariffs which will hurt Ireland the most.

    The UK will then offer trade deals with individual EU nations that will hurt more to refuse than the cost of remaining in the EU and Ireland will have tough choices to make.

    Another point that Harry made, this will result in all of the worst of the Tories coming to the forefront.

    War whether military or economic will result in people who would not be elected such as Churchill taking control. England will be led my warmongers through this period which could well lead to the British army coming over in force to control the border which could be harder than it has ever been before.

    If Gove becomes Tory leader, this would be something he would consider a good idea, especially if as you say, tens of thousands of Syrian immigrants turn their direction to Ireland which will be a real test for our people and could divide us as bitterly as it has in England.

    The more England comes under pressure from the EU, you are also correct that unionism will galvanise its sympathy with England and the divisions in the north will be harsher than they have ever been before with nationalism feeling threatened from growing animosity coming from the unionist community for their support of the EU who will be devil incarnate in their eyes.

    You have to ask yourself, where did it all go wrong?

  3. billy July 6, 2016 at 9:47 am #

    irelands ports would be more of a problem than the border as the only english speaking eu state thats were any migrants will head to.scaremongering stories thousands would gather at the border are exactly that.why would they gather when the rules will have changed more likely to a points benefits,unemployable,were would they live.corporation tax cuts and a few other factors will see ireland following england out.

  4. Antaine de Brún July 6, 2016 at 10:22 am #

    “Who will feel the pain…It depends on who you ask. Some experts will say…”

    Who are the experts? Who were the experts behind the Renewable Heat Incentive which resulted in factories running biomass boilers all year round in premises that previously were not heated with the tab now being picked up by the taxpayer? Who are the experts that stand idly by as money literally goes up in smoke in this part of the world?

    When the smoke clears, the reality of financial policies designed to protect the interests of German and French industrialists will be seen in the clear light of day. Modern day Neros may dither as Belfast burns, however, deals are being negotiated by the gnomes of Zurich and the reality is that pain relief is not on the agenda.

    • billy July 6, 2016 at 12:27 pm #

      who are the experts.the experts thought it a good idea to take a two month holiday with near a thousand pound a week spending money in their tail pockets in the middle of what their calling the biggest crisis since the war lol.just shows the brits have them up there as a normalisation policy they wont be negotiating anything.

  5. truthrevisionist July 6, 2016 at 10:27 am #

    ‘Europe’s nations should be guided towards the superstate, without their people understanding what is happening. This can be accomplished by successive steps, each disguised as having an economic purpose, but which will eventually and irreversibly lead to federation’

    Jean Monnet, Founding Father of the EU. April 30 1952. (Europe: The Shattering of Illusions Vaclav Klaus )

    How dare you think you deserve to be told the truth.

    You are living in a Democracy.

    • jessica July 6, 2016 at 11:26 am #

      I think we are already in the point of federation.

      By the time we have a central army and every citizen a tax number (I assume to take central control over all matters fiscal), what will we call it then?

      Too late I suppose

      • Jud July 6, 2016 at 3:53 pm #

        The United States of Europe.
        That’s always been the objective.

        A surprisingly large percentage of people are (still) fine with that and all that it implies.
        The rest have been oblivious to the ‘project’ until now.

        At least recent events have opened things up to an informed discussions as to what is at stake.

        • jessica July 6, 2016 at 4:43 pm #

          “The United States of Europe.
          That’s always been the objective.”

          I have to admit, I was not aware of it until I started looking into it over the mis-information spouted during the brexit issues pre and post as false information is still being shovelled.

  6. Perkin Warbeck July 6, 2016 at 12:26 pm #

    One fine-minded fellow in the Free Southern Stateen who is for sure feeling the pain of Brexit, Esteemed Blogmeister, is Fintan O’Toole.

    Not best pleased is the Einstein of E-ireland, at all at all, if one is to judge by the behavior, going forward. Of late his FOT fall has been all over the Left Bank of Liffeyside, even more so than at any given spell, difficult though that might well be to grasp.

    If the Vikings of Iceland have been indulging in their overhead handclaps then the High King of Highbrow Hibernia has been keeping time (and volume) by stamping his feet. Which is indeed some, erm, feat.

    Once again it is the spectre of English Nationalism which has truly got the goat of fine-minded Fintan. And as he is famously the Man who Makes up the Mind of the Mindless thus, anything which get his goat will invariably get the goat of the view-hungry sheep who look up and are fed by The Unionist Times.

    Little Englanders has become a term as doom-laden as Zika down here south of the Black Sow’s Dyke.

    -Tiocfaidh ar L.E., you might say.

    Once more Fine-minded Fintan has opted fom the Imp over the Gnat. For, through the entire duration of the DirtyThirty Year War in Norneverland he was never known to once get shirty (blue, drip dry) over the concept of English Imperialism which is the choix du jour of Big Englanders.

    As they do so like to say in Oompa Loompa land:

    -B.E. be’s the best.

    Under the thundering heading ‘Belfast Agreement is a threat to the New English Nationalism’ a very cross Fintan has Michael Gove in his cross-hairs;

    -Michael Gove, who is what passes as the intellectual driving force behind Brexit, utterly despises the 1998 peace deal. In ‘The Price of Peace’ his long pamphlet for the right-wing ‘Centre for Policy Studies’, published in 2000, Gove claimed the entire peace process was nothing but a capitulation to the IRA’.


    Now there is disingenuous and then there is datingenous. The very Fine-minded Fintan’s take would seem to belong to the former category, as there is a prima facie case to be made that he has been , erm, cherry picking from the long pamphlet of Michael Gove.
    He opts not, for instance, to namecheck the views of two which the author of the pamphlet namechecks with approval:

    -As both Dennis Kennedy of Q.U.B. and Professor John A. Murphy of U.C.C. pointed out, the formal recognition of the IRA’s right to control of its arms inherent in the deal was an illegal breach of Article 15.6 of the Irish Constitution. The simple act of accepting the I.R.A’s offer of ‘peace’ on its terms is subversive of the basic law of the Irish Republic . And subversive of the position of Northern Ireland in the U.K’.

    Now, how come Fine-minded Fintan has (IMPishly ?) chosen not to namecheck that pair of Anglo-minded academicians ?

    Consider the following:

    Both DK and JAM have served The Unionist Times with no little distinction. Over a 17 year spell Dennis Kennedy of Queen’s University, Belfast, progressed, with all the of remorselessness of a Sherpa ascending the perpendicular, from the base camp rank of reporter, to become, in turn, Diplomatic Editor, , European Editor, and finally the dizzy heights of a Deputy Editor.

    The contribution of the epistle-packing John A. Murphy, Professor Emeritus of Detritus Studies, Queen’s University, Belfast, has , if anything, been even more noteworthy, having been submitting taut and thoughtful dispatches to the Thunderer sur Liffey for the bulk of his adulthood.

    Champion of the territorial integrity of the 26 C, John A., has never been less than up to 90 about his political beliefs and there has been no let up in his letters to the Ed. Now that he has reached the Big Nine Oh (like his contemporary, Hausfrau SCG and inspiration of many – whisper it !– a billet doux) he has been given a guaranteed place to the fore in the Letters to the Editor page on The Unionist Times.

    After the fashion of the front seats reserved for the old, the infirm and the pregnant with ideas in a public omnibus.

    Could it be (gulp) that Fine-minded Fintan is unaware of his colleagues or (gasp) is he one of those narky narcissistic types who read only their own contributions and their own contributions alone ?

    Cherish the very thought.

    Did one mention, btw, that Michael Gove’s inner hack plotted a career path through the Fourth Estate which bore a remarkable similarity to the combined career path of DK, JAA and FOT ? Ascending as he did from the bottom rung of a trainee reporter through the rungs , respectively, of comment editor, news editor, Saturday editor and finally, the rarefied atmosphere of the assistant editor’s office.

    The only difference being – a minor one, admittedly –that Gove (it rhymes with stove) was a hired hack with the mother paper of The Unionist Times, i.e., The Times, aka The Thunderer of the Thames.

    In ‘ The Price of Peace’ Michael Gove displays an obsession with a particular name whose first initial is P.:

    -Few men have the capacity to have their every word repeated verbatim in British broadsheets. It is an honour denied Popes, Prime Ministers and Presidents. But is one regularly accorded to Mr. P. O Neill.


    Leaving aside the blatant sexism inherent in the assumed masculinity it is only meet and just to accept that the three names on most reasonable peoples’ lists and lips alike, are:
    -Polonius, Peregrine and (gulp) Perkin.

    Mo leithsceal / must excuse oneself now to head to Teach an Asail for a (gasp ) Pee and to consider, in the process, the possibilities of Petronella, Paloma and Prudence.


    July 2, a Fox, a Crab and a rat
    Each threw in the ring their hat
    The sweets of May
    Could carry the day
    A pike in the thatch is where it’s at.

    • Jude Collins July 6, 2016 at 12:44 pm #

      “a Fox, a Crab and a rat Each threw in the ring their hat The sweets of May Could carry the day A pike in the thatch is where it’s at.” – Zoweee!!!

      • Perkin Warbeck July 6, 2016 at 3:49 pm #

        Zoeweeeeeee ?

        Would that, perchance, Esteemed Blogmeister, be a reference to a bespoke young spokesperson who featured on the wireless on Liffeyside during the past few days?

        That would be one, Zoe Healy who has a CV to dye one’s blouse for.

        Listen up:

        Having served her internship of four years as a junior spin-doctor in the Fine Gael Press Operations Theatre under former Prime Minister J. Bruton she then transferred to London.

        Seamlessly, seemingly. .

        Where she put in an a-mazing shift as a senior spin doctor in the Press Office of the Conservative Party Chairperson (Theresa May). After honing her skill sets as a, erm, Lip Replacement Specialist she then returned to Liffeyside just in time to rejoin the branch office for the 2007 General Election.

        When, despite her very best endeavours, Zoe still failed to see Enda ascend into the Prime Ministerial office. Still, he did become the Father of the House during this stint in opposition.

        A simple story of two Tory Parties.

  7. Martin Murray July 6, 2016 at 1:40 pm #

    There is a lot of scaremongering going on. I mean, where’s the precedent for a European war ending up being fought out on the Island of Ireland? Hold on …….. OMG!!!

    • jessica July 6, 2016 at 2:15 pm #

      I cant see thee being a European war Martin, but I can see the EU backed by the US starting a war with Russia and its allies which could very easily include China and maybe even North Korea will throw its hat in the ring as a wildcard.

      The thing is, it is obvious and if it happens, I would find it difficult to support the US and EU.

      To date, England is the only country to attempt to leave the EU.
      I cant help but have a feeling it will be the best thing they ever did, even if it was for all the wrong reasons.

      • Martin Murray July 6, 2016 at 3:51 pm #

        But wasn’t there something recently about Theresa ‘Maggie’ May itching to get Trident replaced to keep those mad Ruskies in line? Don’t mean to scaremonger but surely its ‘mutually assured destruction’ here we come!

        • Jude Collins July 6, 2016 at 4:12 pm #

          Almost certainly, Martin. She’s a church-going, paid-up C of E member…

        • jessica July 6, 2016 at 4:45 pm #

          Can they still afford the 100 billion price tag, and where are they going to put it if Scotland is looking to exit the UK?

          • billy July 6, 2016 at 7:11 pm #

            maybe arlene will offer them the foyle.

          • Ryan July 7, 2016 at 12:17 am #

            “Can they still afford the 100 billion price tag, and where are they going to put it if Scotland is looking to exit the UK?”

            Wales. They cant have a nuclear accident happening near England now, can they?…..Indeed I wouldn’t be surprised if our waters around Narnia was discussed as a potential location.

    • Martin Murray July 6, 2016 at 3:59 pm #

      Brings a whole new meaning to “Remember 1690!”

  8. Ryan July 6, 2016 at 10:10 pm #

    ” and the south comes knocking, begging to be allowed back into the British club.”

    Many Unionists, in the throes of desperation, who I have debated with on twitter have this really wild belief that the South will join the UK again. They say this but wont give me the logic of how they came to that conclusion when I ask them. The reality is they don’t believe that assertion anymore than I do. It also doesn’t make sense, if there was a United Ireland of any kind, whether in the UK or not, then Unionists will still be a small minority. That’s just Home Rule all over again, the same Home Rule Unionists opposed and threatened treason against the British Crown to avoid.

    I wouldn’t be surprised in the next few years that a large Unionist movement, maybe not a majority but a large minority, campaign for repartition due to a Catholic majority occurring in the North. Its much like the Ulster Independence Movement, supported by the likes of Willie Frazer, who wanted out of the UK so they could “deal with the IRA themselves”. But Ulster Independence went out the window once the future demographics became clear.

    “Irish nationalists and republicans see the current opposition in the north to BREXIT as an opportunity for unionists to consider again the argument for national reunification”

    Well I can certainly see upper class Unionists seriously considering Irish Unity now. Indeed one Unionist from Bangor wrote to the Newsletter saying he was now a supporter of Irish Unity. You will see many of the wealthy Unionists (who were always small u unionists anyway) now supporting Irish Unity due to their need for unrestricted trade with the South and the EU.

    Unionist politicians, on the other hand, wont be changing their minds. Most of them have been under the wing of the Orange Order since they were toddlers. They aren’t people who sit back and think logically, they are spurred on by tribalism. As I said yesterday most of them would rather have their own people reduced to living in mud huts before they would ever consider linking up with the South for the betterment of all our people. It reminds me of the mentality the Germans had in the Battle of Berlin, they doomed themselves knowing full well that it was all pointless.

    As Irish economist David McWilliams said: “The DUP could be signing their own death warrant by backing Brexit”. I think they have and the DUP will realize it sooner or later, especially if Scotland gets another Independence referendum and when they’re told by Westminster/Dublin that there has to be closer co-operation between the North and South of Ireland.

    • jessica July 7, 2016 at 7:49 am #

      Everything is up in the air until we get some idea what the new relationship between England and the EU will be.

      I doubt Scotland or NI will be high on the agenda.

      I cant see how the current UK will survive but I also don’t see how a new relationship can be ignored either.

      The question they should be asking is what relationship between these islands in a UK mark 2 which wont be a kingdom for starters, would a united Ireland be comfortable in. It wont be a monarchy I am fairly sure of that. Scotland will become a republic when the queen steps aside I believe.

      I think it is more wishful thinking on their part more than anything else but the rest of is cant move on until they come to terms with it. As I have said many times, unionism is a call and chain on Ireland.