Why aren’t you in Brussels?

After several days of being taken to the woodshed, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson was found walking the streets. And, he got quite an earful. One man said it clearly. “Why are you here? Why aren’t you in Brussels?”

The meaning is clear. Why aren’t you in Brussels negotiating a deal to leave the European Union? Whether you favor Brexit or not, leaving the EU without a deal would be disastrous. CEOs have been consistent in this message. To their credit, many of them do not favor leaving rhe EU. They see Brexit as dilutive to the British economy. Yet, leaving with no deal would be a bureaucratic fiasco. Think long lines of trucks at the border, both ways.

Sadly, the PM is not known to be a detailed person, not unlike the US president. So, when Boris tells people a “no-deal” Brexit is manageable, those words should not give anyone comfort, even pro-Brexit people. Going one step further, the same could be said of Parliament whose inability to manage Brexit has put the UK in this predicament.

So, I think the man on the street has it right. Prime Minister, get your fanny to Brussels. And, take some detail people with you. You will need them. Either get a deal done or don’t leave the EU.

21 thoughts on “Why aren’t you in Brussels?

  1. The Conservative party here is in meltdown. The wheels are coming off the Boris bus, but there is no point in delaying Brexit (each week of delay costs Britain millions ££££). A deal must be done, but sadly, none of the parties have an answer as to how to do that deal. As for staying in the EU, we will be sealing our fate as bottom of the pile in the EU. To stay in the EU would mean we can never invoke article 50 again. We would be tied legally no matter what they punish us with. Quite honestly, Boris has to get that deal…. Or someone…

    What a mess!

    • Colette, the devil is always in the details. If Brexit is to occur, my strong suggestion to the PM and Parliament is to check all egos at the door, define must haves and acceptables, and work out a deal. This may (and likely should) include a step of a “vote of no confidence” in the PM who people knew should not have gotten the job. The PM needs to be a boring, get it done public servant at least for the next couple of years. Boris is not that person.

      The fact Donald Trump supports Boris should be prima facie evidence that is not ideal. The fact the Brexit campaign wanted neither Boris or Nigel Farage on the planning committee, speaks volumes. Keith

      • Trouble is Keith… I don’t see anyone who could improve on Theresa May’s deal. She tried desperately to get it through… But every party in our system wants something different and the fact is, they will end up having an election which will split the public vote even wider. There will be no majority for Labour while they have a Marxist idealist leading them (Jeremy Corbyn). I know staunch Labour supporters (and they were Trade Union leaders too) that will not vote for Labour while a radical figure like Corbyn is in charge. Britain’s Green Party has attracted some, but they are a thinly desguised communistic ideal that wants a Republic of Britain (without the Monarchy) and Brits are not ready to sacrifice their Queen. There has been a movement of former Conservative, and Labour members of Parliament, forsaking their parties to join the center ground Liberal Party, who want to stay in the EU… An election before Brexit has been voted against by all parties, so the whole thing has come to yet another stalemate. To say that this is a mess, is a gross understatement. I actually blame David Cameron for bringing us this mess… And when he created it, he walked away!

      • I actually don’t know who to vote for.. I don’t like any of the party positions. I do wish that the Green party were a more appealing party… They are right on a lot of things, but in all conscience, they and the Labour Party (with Corbyn at the helm) will plunge Britain into some dark days of debt load, if they get their way.

      • Our own media have tagged the events here as ‘Groundhog Day,’ referring to the movie with Bill Murray. The whole thing is in a circular trap with no resolution yet to be seen.

      • Colette, from what I know about May’s deal, I agree. To be frank, I think the criticism toward May had more than a hint of sexism. And, all of Parliament needs to check their ego and expectations. Thay do not have a good hand to play. Keith

      • I am sure that Mrs May has a, wry smile, and grim satisfaction that she was right… All the Mysoginistic politicians in the world will not improve on what she brought to the table because the EU will not budge on their position. Boris Johnson wanted to play a game of ‘Chicken’ right down to the Oct 31st deadline, hoping that the EU would ‘blink’ and give more concessions.
        Such tactics are not going to work with Brussels (and certainly not now). Perhaps Boris will have to swallow his words that he’d rather die in a ditch rather than ask for a further extension on the Brexit deadline.

      • Colette, agreed. If I had to sum up Boris in one phrase – he is all talk. That is why the advice from the man on the street is so apt. Keith

      • Colette, clearly David Cameron screwed the pooch. I also blame people who did not want Brexit (or in our case Trump) and did not vote.

        Like Johnson, I think we all have had enough of Jeremy Corbyn. He, Johnson and Farage could be exiled and politics would significantly improve. Right now, my favorite Johnson is Boris’ brother Jo.

        My biggest concerns with Brexit is the potential referendums in Northern Ireland and Scotland to leave the UK. For Boris to not consider a hard Irish border a problem reveals a poor understanding of history.


  2. Johnson is another creature who has done an Icarus impersonation, only in this case without the classic style and grace of the original legend.
    The fellow is quite out of his league, another individual lacking in the professionalism needed for leadership has blundered into a place he has no business being simply because of a wave of hysteria. You simply do not try to override the UK Parliament in this arrogant and high-handed manner, particularly when you do not have overwhelming popular support (on this issue 17,000,000 who voted Brexit does not count)
    An astute operator would have called in the leaders of other parties and said ‘Well. We’ve all seen what has been happening. We all know the UK is split on this issue. I have my ideas. What are yours? Maybe, just maybe for once we can forge an alliance on this issue. I am listening,’….then pause to look at his watch, look up and says ‘Clock is ticking away,’
    Useless. Quite useless (and sadly expected to be so)

    • Roger, call me crazy, but they knew Boris would be divisive and reckless. They still voted yes. Boris needs to bw shown the door and the next PM needs to be a boringly competent detailed person. Ironically, an increasing number of multinational CEOs are introverts. Keith

      • This was the result of the hysteria caused by the overrated and consistently underperforming Farage and his latest vanity project The Brexit Party.
        The Conservative activists promptly started to imitate the nasty wing of The Labour Party and looked for someone with extreme views, hence the otherwise comic appearance of Johnson.
        You are quite correct concerning the ‘boringly competent’ person. although here comes to European view born of 1000 years of history. This should be a veneer, beneath which is a steel, stern, focused person willing to brush aside these fools with the contempt they deserve and bring order.
        Small wonder introverts are rising, this allows them to concentrate on ‘The Job Which Has To Be Done’

  3. Roger, well said, especially your final line regarding the job that needs to be done. I believe Johnson, Corbyn and Farage represent the worst of British politics. Surely, there are several competent officials who could step in to get something done.

    Same could be said for our reckless president over here. Boring competence would be our salvation. Keith

  4. Note to Readers: While I understand the sentiment behind Brexit, I am not alone in saying it will be dilutive to the UK economy for many years. Additionalky, the UK will see an acceleration in the movement of EU headquarters and distribution centers to EU cities. And, the UK may see votes by Scotland and Northern Ireland to secede and rejoin the EU. But, all of the above will be worsened by a no-deal Brexit.

  5. Note to Readers: Per The Guardian, yet one more Conservative party has resigned in protest over Boris Johnson’s handling of his PM duties relating to Brexit. Here is a snippet from their article:

    “Amber Rudd has resigned from both the cabinet and the parliamentary Conservative party and launched an extraordinary attack on Boris Johnson, accusing him of ‘political vandalism’ and ‘an assault on decency and democracy’.

    The former work and pensions secretary announced her decision in a letter to the prime minister in which she said she no longer believed Johnson’s promises that he wanted to reach a deal with the European Union.”

    My guess is Johnson will not survive the week as PM. But, we will see how it unfolds.

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