17 January 2017
Last night I went to see Professor Anthony Grayling talking to the Bristol for Europe group at the Colston Hall. It was a full house meeting. Professor Grayling describes the present situation as the gravest political crisis since 1945.
His round up of the present situation was comprehensive, chilling and as one might expect from so distinguished an academic, extremely well informed.
You will be familiar with the background to :
The backfiring of a tactical move by David Cameron in order to deal with an internal party difficulty
A referendum officially designed as an advisory, not a binding process
A referendum carried out at in the middle of a refugee crisis
An unscrupulous and untruthful Leave campaign
Press coverage vastly biased against EU
A lamentable Remain campaign, based upon economic facts but no vision
A deeply flawed referendum design, not including thresholds resulting in only 37% of the electorate achieving outright victory
Eligibility to vote heavily trimmed to exclude groups likely to vote Remain, such as under 18 year olds, Britons living in the EU etc.
A very low margin (3%) of victory by Leave followed by precipitate resignation of David Cameron
A thuggish and populist tone of political debate from the Leave side
The result is a far-right anti-EU Government which has usurped the power conferred by an election in 2014 upon David Cameron’s centre-right This power grab amounts to a virtual coup d’etat. The Government has engaged in the focussed aim of getting the country out of the EU with as little debate as possible, and as quickly as possible. It has established a ministry to carry this through.
KEY POINT HERE
Their present strategy is to ‘normalise’ the situation – to make it appear that leaving the EU is officially sanctioned, and that the Government have a democratic mandate to do this.
Nothing could be further from the truth. The Government does not have the support of Parliament and only 37% of the electorate voted for it. Parliament has never discussed Brexit. On the contrary, the Government is trying to prevent Parliamentary intervention, initially through the courts (where it seems to have failed) and then by employing an obscure and unscrupulous Parliamentary stratagem of a two line motion to prevent debate.
EFFICIENT ACTION REQUIRED
In order to delay or prevent this disastrous hi-jacking by the Tory Brexit clique the most effective action is to write a strong, polite, brief and informed letter to one’s MP and to any other MP that one might know. Letters to MP’s are considered important by them. Written pressure, when maintained, has more effect than a single letter. Consider to use pen and paper, as this has more impact.
Where MP’s have taken action to demand a Parliamentary debate, praise them. The power of Parliament is crucially important.
Further action which should be considered will include public demonstrations and street protests, all of which have shown themselves to be effective when carried out on a widespread basis. If you can organize, this is the time.
Written by Rod Nelson, member of Stroud Green Party January 17th 2017
P.S. We also have a Green Party petition that we'd love you to sign, in support of keeping free movement of people.