A hard Brexit? Wagendorp merely sees advantages
Best-selling author Bert Wagendorp‘s September 25 column in de Volkskrant
The British government published 24 new memos last Monday as part of a consequence analysis of a ‘hard Brexit’, the departure of the British from the European Union without the two of them having reached an agreement. The memos deal with the consequences for dog owners, airlines, food labels, flower imports and spring water.
So far some 75 of such documents have been produced, and counting. Efforts to find a more acute résumé [I wonder when the French will finally get their own word for ‘résumé’ – jsl]… any efforts to find a more acute résumé of the disruptive chaos a ‘hard Brexit will bring to the UK are in vain.
The large majority of memos start with the reassuring line: “In the unlikely event of a no deal …” Now, that, ladies and gentlemen, is British civil servant humour! As a hard Brexit is far less unlikely than is being suggested in the memos.
The imminent disaster will not bring the British to their senses though. On the contrary. When they are cornered and defeat is inevitable they close ranks and find common ground in their aversion to Frogs and Krauts. Any sacrifice will be made without hesitation. Their togetherness when it comes to suffering is unequalled, as well as the unwavering belief in their own superiority – and those will prevail. The best example is The Blitz, the wave of German bombings of London during WWII, which took their tenacity to the nth degree.
I am very much of the opinion the British should have broken away from the EU a long time ago. Never have joined in the first place would have been preferable as their membership destroyed a lot. Due to it, London, once the proud, nay arrogant capital of the British Empire, has been reduced to the most European capital of them all, filled with citizens from other member states. London is, with an estimated population of 300,000 French, a bigger French city than Bordeaux. After a hard Brexit that population will be decimated and London will finally be British again. At long last we shall only be able to visit, and return from our trip with cock-and-bull stories about the horrible English cuisine [I wonder when the French will come up with their own word for… enfin! – jsl]. First and foremost, crispy puke in steak and kidney pie.
Brexit will lead to Great Britain being British and to the British being happy again: an isolated insularity where people wallow in faded glory and nostalgia. Perhaps they could when the foreign automakers have left revive some of those long forgotten brands, Wolseley, Riley, Rover or Singer – great automobiles one could contemplate life in, in the rain along the roadside of the motorway when for a change the great automobile had decided to break down again.
I must admit it is very nice to be able to travel around Europe without much ado. But, being able to travel to a nearby country and really feel abroad again does have its appeal. For instance, having to queue up for customs anew. Lovely!
The Premier League will return to be an actual English competition, tall pale attackers and toothless midfielders with vicious tackles. Perhaps they will even abandon cycle racing again and we no longer shall have to sigh under the yoke of Sky.
Shortly we don’t need the transcendent TV series The Crown anymore, in order for us to see how it used to be, because… it will all have become reality again – it’s yesterday once more. And no more Old Speckled Hen at our local supermarket. We shall actually have to travel to England to get us some – to some muggy pub where it tastes even better.
A hard Brexit: unlike many prophets of doom I’m merely seeing advantages.