Bristol For Europe

Stopping Brexit at all costs

It's more than a bad dream

I have a recurrent nightmare.  I find myself on stage in the wings about to make an entrance and I realise I have not learned my lines.  It’s a leading role and despite meaning to do it, I just haven’t learned my lines at all.  Help!  Fortunately for me I wake up each morning to find this is not true.

 

But our Brexit team are living out this reality day after day after day.  Not knowing your lines as you enter arguably the most important negotiations any British government has faced since Munich 1938 is about as bad as it could get.

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A hung parliament - what next?

So we now have a hung parliament, thanks in no small way to the campaign on tactical voting in the run up to the election. Unfortunately the Labour Party do not seem to realise that many votes cast for their candidates were not a vote for them but against the Conservatives and their policy to proceed with a hard brexit. If Labour now see this as a mandate to forge ahead with soft, or indeed any Brexit plans, they are very much mistaken. Their rise in seats is partly as a consequence of the enormous number of Remainers who voted tactically for candidates they would not normally support. 

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Tactical voting guide for Bristol area

Bristol for Europe is a pro-European cross-party campaign group recommending tactical voting in the Bristol area.

We need to stop try and stop Theresa May winning a large majority which she will claim justifies her plans for Hard Brexit. We need to elect the most pro-European MPs we can. Tactical voting means putting aside concerns over parties or leaders, and voting for candidates we think have the best chance of winning in a particular constituency.

All tactical voting is a gamble. All you can do is look at the past records and current trends and make a recommendation. These are our suggestions for the Bristol area.

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If the Scots can have another referendum then why can’t we?

I hate referenda and always have done.  They are the refuge of weak governments. The 1975 European Referendum was a ridiculous political contrivance and every referendum ever since has been the same or worse.

But they happened and catastrophically last year Britain voted to leave the EU.  As the Brexiteers never tire of telling us - get used to it.  Well I am, and it doesn’t stop me being angry about it.  Sadly it is an historical fact that the British (mostly English) voted for something that is stupid and damaging. As a result the Scots can’t wait to have another go to gain their freedom from England.

Much though I don’t want to see a break up of the Union, I don’t find it hard to understand why they are calling on the Prime Minister to agree to a rerun of 2014.   Why?  Because they were sold a pup.  The British government told them that voting to stay in the UK meant staying in the EU.  Now look what’s gone and happened. 

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The Great British Con

Since the 23rd June 2016, we are being constantly reminded that our government is merely executing the democratic ‘will of the people’. Brexit is marketed to us and the rest of the world as a simple celebration of British democracy and newly-found national self-confidence. Our government is intent on progressing Brexit at a dangerous speed, making headlines that cause us to focus on mitigating the effects of individual events and allowing them to normalise Brexit by ignoring the truth of the events that preceded the EU referendum. Lest we forget.

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Understanding Brexit 2: Can we Control Immigration and are consequences too large?

Global Trade is the main driver of net migration with recent short term peaks due to new markets opening such as Eastern Europe but this is passing its peak now before increasing migrants return to their countries with their new funds to invest and better job opportunities there now. 

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In the streets they shout at us “What you’re doing is undemocratic”.

OUR SUPPORT IS BURGEONING

Every Saturday for weeks now we have being setting up our stall in various parts of Bristol, signing up new supporters to our cause.  Frequently people come to us with an anxious gratitude that we are actually doing something to resist Brexit.  There are large numbers of deeply worried people out there who feel unrepresented by our political leaders.  Our job is to give them a voice.

As a result the number of our supporters are burgeoning.  We have significantly more than 2,500 on our books and last weekend alone more than 400 joined us.  5,000 sign ups now feels comfortably within our grasp.  There can’t be any other organisation in Bristol growing so rapidly.

But it would be deluded of us to imagine that right now the majority of the British public are swinging behind us.  Very often people we meet on the streets of Bristol say “I voted Remain, but it’s over now and we just have to accept the result of the referendum” or more ignorantly “we’ve already left haven’t we?”  The aggressive Leavers get annoyed saying “Stop doing this.  It’s undemocratic.  We won the vote and you lost”.

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I remember when Britain was broke and the fear of war in Western Europe was ever present

Reading this article by Geoffrey White, published by "Reasons2Remain" I instantly connected with every word written.  So many articles on Brexit talk about the economic implications of leaving the EU.  Rightly so, given the likely damage we and our country face from such steps being taken.  But this is not the primary reason why I love the EU with all my heart.

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Understanding Brexit: Sovereignty – Where are Democratic Powers held/shared?

We are all busy people so we vote at various levels of government for people to represent us with expertise.

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People must know the dangers

Last week, Britain’s ambassador to the EU, Sir Ivan Rogers, resigned in protest at the lack of direction of the UK government, and the refusal of the government to listen to his advice. The job of civil servants is to give advice on government thinking and then to carry out the policy of the government. How we are to leave the EU is fundamental to civil servants trying to carry out that function. Sir Ivan’s resignation cited the lack of clear objectives coming from the government, meaning his job was impossible to perform because he didn’t know what the government’s policy was, other than to leave the EU.

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