The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.

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Brexit Negotiations

"In negotiations you have to believe you are going to win." - Jacob Rees Mogg



Brexit was simply about taking back control of our borders and laws. It was about deciding our own future. Brexit for many is about striding forth into a new world post-Eu. The UK managed to survive without the EU for hundreds of years. After such considerations, it is difficult to see how the UK would now fail. The FTSE closed at a record high on 21 December 2017, dowsing the fiery doubts of those who said during the referendum that the UK would fail to survive beyond the EU. Article 50 has been triggered and so the EU and UK are now bound by the existing laws of the EU Parliament. Both parties must conclude all their agreements before the end of any agreed transition period. Such a position is not open to debate. It is set in stone under Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty. Article 50 part 3 clearly states:

      1. The Treaties shall cease to apply to the State in question from the date of entry into force of the withdrawal agreement or, failing that, two years after the notification referred to in paragraph 2, unless the European Council, in agreement with the Member State concerned, unanimously decides to extend this period.i

The EU and UK are bound by the terms of the Lisbon Treaty and so are the other member states. However, the EU is also bound by its own legislation to be fair to member states. It will of course be very difficult for an ill-prepared government to overcome so many challenges, largely because neither the Civil Service nor the government institution itself made plans for a Leave victory on 23 June 2016. Theresa May's government has been further curtailed by only achieving a slim majority as the last General Election. Questions should be asked and rightly so.

Theresa May drew a comparison between the the vote to leave and the Renaissance. Perhaps a better comparison would be with the Enlightenment. The Enlightenment was after all about change. The Age of Reason as it came to be known was just as significant. Where the Renaissance bridged the gap between the Medieval and modernity, the Enlightenment created a new way of thinking. And that is perhaps what scares those who voted Remain and other supporters of the EU. Either way, both the Renaissance and the Enlightenment are now historical facts – as is the vote to Leave.


The UK has created inventions that have changed the face of the modern world. Whether we just consider the humble railway and modern road surface or whether we call upon the many other inventions that we have created, the British will to overcome adversity can be encapsulated in the phrase – Fortis in Arduis.ii Forty years of facing red tape has been met with a shift in the general psyche that will not be undone by a speech in Florence or elsewhere. Nor will such an attitude be changed by threats open and veiled from the executive of the EU. The British after all are a proud race. Not a xenophobic one. The size of our Foreign Aid budget over the last 40 years proves this.

Michel Barnier and Guy Verhofstadt have both attempted to say that the British need to learn that they cannot get their own way all the time in negotiations. Such a public display of subversion is often met by British resilience. Telling a Brit they cannot succeed without help usually makes them do so. And that is only 2 of the many we are aiming to have negotiate our terms of leaving the EU. Some argue that Jean Claude Juncker needs to understand that any ill-treatment of member states like Cyprus and Greece will not bode well with new members. The Visegard Group will understandably be alarmed by the treatment of Poland by the EU causing further division between member states.

The EU had 2 long years to offer Prime Minister David Cameron a deal that was credible and thus the opportunity to block the Leave campaign. Why did the EU fail to do so? Neither Cameron nor Juncker came to a sensible conclusion on the key elements British voters wanted. It was a wasted opportunity. I hope the EU does not shoot itself in the foot again, by misjudging public mood in its many member states who have seen the anti-centralisation movement burst forth as swiftly as the Enlightenment. The more the EU goes against countries like Austria, Hungary, Poland and Sweden the more domestic insurgence it will create.



ihttp://www.lisbon-treaty.org/wcm/the-lisbon-treaty/treaty-on-European-union-and-comments/title-6-final-provisions/137-article-50.html
iiStrong in difficult times.

Jacob Rees Mogg MP

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Comments 1

Guest - Mike Ferro on Monday, 25 December 2017 19:28

I think; as do others, that a good analogy from history for Brexit is the repeal of the Corn Laws in the ninetennth century. The great, the good, the poo=bahs and the producers all said it would be a disaster there'd be no bread and the common people would starve.
The reverse happened: consumers interests were prioritised over those of producers and lobbyists, as will be the case with Brexot, and there was a great improvement in general well being.

I think; as do others, that a good analogy from history for Brexit is the repeal of the Corn Laws in the ninetennth century. The great, the good, the poo=bahs and the producers all said it would be a disaster there'd be no bread and the common people would starve. The reverse happened: consumers interests were prioritised over those of producers and lobbyists, as will be the case with Brexot, and there was a great improvement in general well being.
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Monday, 21 May 2018

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