Risks to Brexit this week include the entire population of England having been at the pub since 6am on Saturday.
Alas everything is not quite back to normal, of course. The owners of gyms and swimming pools have complained that they are still not allowed to open. Swimming pools is particular may be right to be worried, given the chattering classes’ increasing horror at the idea of going anywhere near chlorine. As BfB subscriber Robin Dawson writes in this week, if we are so afraid of chlorinating chicken, is it not also time we stopped chlorinating our hydrophilic children?
Though Covid-19 looks set to stay with us for a long time yet, the government have started shifting the conversation on to what post-Corona politics will look like, unveiling plans for a British ‘New Deal’. According to Michael Gove’s Ditchley lecture, this which will form part of a wider shake up in the economy and government.
One step towards the regeneration of Whitehall has already been taken, with Britain’s chief Brexit negotiator, David Frost, appointed as the Prime Minister’s new national security adviser. Some, including Theresa May, have raised questions about Frost’s suitability for the job. But if he can bring some of the panache he has brought to the Brexit negotiations (an area outside May’s own sphere of expertise), the appointment can only be a good thing.
Meanwhile, however, Brexit still needs Frost’s full attention. British hopes for faster progress towards a good trade deal with the EU rested on Angela Merkel as Germany took over the rotating Presidency of the EU on July 1st. Just as under Theresa May these hopes look wide of the mark. Ms Merkel has warned the EU to prepare for no deal and her foreign minister Heiko Maas has criticised the UK for sluggish negotiating. The Germans are tough negotiators but this time they are matched by the British.
BfB contributors Sir Richard Dearlove and Gwythian Prins have written a piece on satellites for The Times’ Thunderer column, published on 30 June under the title ‘UK satellite system is within our reach’. You can also find a version of this article on our website.
On the website this week
LEO is vital if global Britain is to roar, by Sir Richard Dearlove and Gwythian Prins
Satellite technology is developing very fast. Global Britain has a world-class space sector and a chance to lead the field. A swarm of small Low Earth Orbit [LEO] global positioning satellites is very much in Global Britain’s and Five Eye’s interests, providing redundancy for higher orbit GPS in the week that Communist China has completed deployment of its Beidou competitor.
“We welcome reports that the US Government might trigger a Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) review to block an unfriendly foreign purchaser.”
A Better Alternative to the EU State Aid Regime, by David Collins
Professor David Collins describes a way out of the current stand-off between the UK and EU on the issue of state-aid rules for subsidies to private firms. The EU wants to lock the UK into their regime but WTO rules on subsidies are a better way forward, especially if a UK:EU free trade agreement incorporates suggested reforms to the WTO rules.
“The EU is less interested in controlling trade-distorting subsidies than it is in retaining a significant degree of oversight over the UK economy.”
We are also on Twitter, posting articles and retweeting the daily events that bring Brexit to the fore in the national news.
Discussion also continues over on Facebook. Dave Ashcroft agreed with Catherine McBride’s article explored distortions in reports by the Financial Times, commenting, “The FT is almost daily pumping out anti-British, anti-Brexit, anti-US propaganda.”
How you can help
There is much about Brexit still to be decided. Our MPs listen to their constituents. Do continue to send them links to our articles, especially on matters relevant to your constituency – for example, in rural areas, articles on the threat to British agriculture. Alternatively, make an appointment to speak to them at their next surgery. Let them know what you want post-Brexit Britain to look like.
As Boris Johnson said in in his post-election address, it is also time for unity and reconciliation. Keep reading our posts and share links to our quality content to help others understand how leaving the EU will be good for the UK economy and for our own democratic governance. We aim to educate our critics to think differently and more positively about the long-term impact of Brexit.
An Oxbridge PhD Student
Dr Graham Gudgin
Economist, Centre for Business Research, Judge Business School University of Cambridge
Professor Robert Tombs
Emeritus Professor of French History, University of Cambridge