The Blog

It doesn't get much simpler or clearer than this.

What really scares me is just how many people (voting public, not MPs) think NoDeal is a valid option. They're being lied to and believing it. Again.

The idea that NoDeal is an option is dangerously and catastrophically delusional. It MUST be taken off the table.

[from: Google+ Posts]

I feel slightly sick. This was from Mar 2018. Nothing has changed except the timescales have gone out the window.

Julian Bond originally shared this post:
I've just stumbled across the Hertford & Stortford CLP Labour Party newsletter.

I'm going to quote the section on Brexit in full because it's quite a reasonable summary of where we are in early March 2018. One sentence stood out though under "known unknowns" (sic!).

"(c) After the May Local Government elections the Labour Party will revise its position on Brexit"

Ah, politics and the pursuit of power. Donchajusloveem! The Labour Party is so busy trying to get itself elected, it's sidelining the big problems. It's somehow persuaded itself (cough, Momentum has persuaded it, cough) that an overtly anti-Brexit stance will hurt it in the polls. So it won't do that until the May 2018->Mar 2019 window when there's no elections scheduled.

here's the text
Brexit: Seven months to go?

Here are the milestones:
1. Phase one written agreement March 2018
2. Phase 2 agreement October 2018
3. Departure from EU institutions 29th March 2019 (D-day)
4. Transition phase/implementation of any deal , not later than December 2020

And here are the variables:
(a) The EU four freedoms, the body of social, technical and commercial regulations, the European Court of Justice (ECJ), security, EU trade agreements, single market and customs union, air traffic, passporting, and EU institutions (commission, parliament, council)
(b) The UK redlines are no single market, no customs union, no free movement, no ECJ oversight, freedom to set UK trade deals, soft Irish border

The UK does not appear to have a position apart from a fall back ‘no deal’ exit from all of the EU variables above, and a World Trade Organisation (WTO) basis for trading.

The phase 1 agreement was fudged in December 2017, i.e. the divorce settlement, end of free movement (EU and UK citizen status) and the Irish internal border. The EU requires the agreement in writing (no fudges) at the end of March (milestone 1). Only the divorce settlement at £39 billion may be definite, citizens rights are contentious and a soft Irish border is impossible without either the EU or the UK or both compromising on the variables. The EU has made it clear what it expects to include in the agreement (see It is not clear how the EU will react if agreement cannot be reached on the phase 1 issues.

The phase 2 agreement is about to start negotiation. Although D-day (departure day) is March 2019, any agreement has to be approved by the 27 national governments, the EU Commission, and the European Parliament. This approval is estimated to require the six months October 2018 (milestone 2) to March 2019 (milestone 3). The UK Westminster Parliament and the devolved Assemblies potentially have the
opportunity to approve the agreement although the Government has warned this may not be possible in time to influence the outcome of phase 2 (milestone 2). A key part of phase 2 negotiation is the transition (implementation) phase after milestone 3. This is currently highly contentious but may end up as exit from the EU institutions, but retention of the other EU variables with the ability to negotiate (but not sign)
trade treaties. Reese Mogg, as leading Brexiteer, refers to this as a ‘vassal state’ and might force the Government to drop the transition phase. The EU, in the absence of a UK position, has produced a position paper “Transitional Arrangements in the Withdrawal Agreement” It is not clear what will happen
if one or other or both of the agreements are unacceptable or require further negotiation so that the EU approvals are not received by D-day.

The EU has indicated that it would welcome the UK’s return to the Union although stopping Brexit might require the approval of all 27 EU nations. If this were to take place before milestone 3 then Brexit could simply be stopped. If it takes place before milestone 4 (if there is a milestone 4) then the UK could simply
rejoin the EU institutions and continue in a (diminished) membership. If it takes place after milestone 4, then the UK would join the list of countries seeking access to the Union and could be required to join the Euro as the price of re-admission.

Within the EU, there is a common negotiating position and strong resistance to ‘cherry-picking’ and ‘having cake and eating it’ approaches to modifying this position, although the UK lives in hope.

Within the UK, the known unknowns are:
(a) There is no customs union of any form
(b) Theresa May’s government might be replaced by a strongly pro hard Brexit administration
(c) After the May Local Government elections the Labour Party will revise its position on Brexit
(d) Passage of legislation embodied in the UK Withdrawal Bill and other bills may falter
(e) The Tories may call a General Election

The Government has already indicated that it will not remain in the customs union but might be a member of a customs union; however some Brexiteers are opposed even to this. No customs union (option (a)) is a significant barrier to trade (and to the Irish Border). The “customs arrangement” suggested by the UK is ill-defined and may be unacceptable to the EU. Option (b) is a possibility if the Tories can agree a replacement leader. The signs are that this could move the Government even further to the right and to a definite hard Brexit position. Option (c), if it happens, might result in the Government (even with its DUP backed majority) being unable to pass key legislation. Resistance to parts of the withdrawal legislation can be expected, for example the ‘Henry VIII’ powers that give the Government a virtually blank legislative cheque, or omissions of key aspects such as worker’s rights and environmental issues. However, failure to provide a legal framework post Brexit (option (d)) would have a nuclear impact on the UK so that Labour might press for amending rather than outright blocking of legislation.

The Tories would not want to risk losing a General Election (and maybe having a soft or no Brexit) and would seek to avoid option (e), although they might be tempted to risk it after D-day (milestone 3) on a “job done, don’t spoil it” platform but before the end of any transition period. Labour would then get the blame for the expected problems that would follow milestone 4.

 Branch Newsletters - Google Drive »
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[from: Google+ Posts]

who think "No Deal" is a good option. Especially when I live next door to one of only 2 constituencies that think May's deal is a good option.

[from: Google+ Posts]

Google+ Sunset

8 months and counting till the Google+ Sunset. 2 months since the announcement from Google. And all's quiet, with no further official news or announcements.

There's a User driven, help and support community here. "Google+ Mass Migration"

Julian Bond originally shared this post:
It's 2 months now since the 8-Oct announcement of the G+ Sunset. As far as I'm aware, there has been no further official announcement from Google beyond the initial blog post and the G+ post.

At the time they said:-
We’ll post more details, including instructions for exporting and saving your personal content, right here on Google+.
But there hasn't been anything posted.

All we have seen is G+ buttons and share links slowly disappear from other Google properties.

There's a lot of questions arising. Many of them have been shared in this group. Currently, Takeout is limited and awkward. And feedback has been posted by lots of people detailing the issues. Not least is the question of what happens to G+ profiles. That's data that is shared across and used by other properties such as Gmail, Contacts, Drive and Photos. The question of how to archive and move Personal Posts and Communities to other platforms is still very much up in the open.

With Holiday season upon us, I suppose any kind of announcement or change before Jan 8 is unlikely. But each month that goes by is a month lost for us users, customers and consumers to prepare, save our data, republish it and migrate somewhere else.

8 Months and counting.

[from: Google+ Posts]

So it has come to this. The Prime Minister's office is now sending out Nigerian Spam letters.


It's hard to know where to even start, given that the letter is so full of half-truths, fakery and outright lies. Thankfully others have done it for us.

This Deal must be voted out. Any subsequent deal that hopes to tweak the edges to run down the clock must also be voted out. This has now been reduced to a 3 way decision.
May-Deal, No-Deal or No-Brexit. And it's up to our representatives in government to make that decision in the best interests of the country. And not to be swayed just by party politics or personal power.

And remember folks:-
No UK-Exit is better than any bad UK-Exit. And they're all bad.
 Thread by @GuitarMoog: "Dear @theresa_may, Thank you for your letter. From the very first sentence to the very last, it is a tissue of revisionism, wilful misdirect […]" #SacktheBrexitDeal »
Thread by @GuitarMoog: "Dear @theresa_may, Thank you for your letter. From the very first sentence to the very last, it is a tissue of revisi false equivalences, and downright lies. You have a lot of bloody gall writing this to me. […]" #SacktheBrexitDeal

[from: Google+ Posts]

once - Cross-post everywhere" .

So I posted once on G+ and the system cross posted the article or a subset of it to all the other platforms. This originally used but then they stopped reading G+. I was never completely happy with the layout. And I needed to code for this in my own blog anyway, so I wrote a G+ post to Atom convertor. This gave me an Atom feed to push into as well as a source for my blog to auto-create posts. Then Facebook stopped allowing external apps to post on a personal timeline. This process always had to start with G+ because that didn't have a write API. It could only be a source for cross posting, not a sink. and IFTTT have become less and less useful as they monetise and keep reducing support for free users.

Meanwhile, new systems started to turn up with their own APIs like Mastodon, Diaspora, Hubzilla, etc. But even though they use standardised protocols, they're still too small to get any traction with things like and IFTTT.

And now G+ is closing down. So it can't even be a source any more. And there's no obvious way to get posts out of Facebook as they disabled Atom feeds out of Facebook long ago.

So what with the snowflake API problem, free services getting monetised and closed and walled gardens adding barbed wire to the top of the walls, this approach is reaching the end of the road. Maybe the idea of "Post once - Cross-post everywhere" has become impossible. It's certainly hard to work out where to start.

[from: Google+ Posts]


Julian Bond originally shared this post:
So as we throw the damp rizla packet of disappointment into the overflowing ashtray of sadness and hope that the weekend's big fish doesn't eat the little fish in the cardboard box, we realize that it's not that bad, it's just another rainy monday.

[from: Google+ Posts]

Never forget.
Never again.


War is over.
No more war.
 Peace Pledge Union | »
White poppy wearers to hold Alternative Remembrance Sunday Ceremonies · White poppy wreaths will be laid throughout Britain this weekend to commemorate all victims of war of all nationalities. Jitei White, walking while wearing a white poppy ...

[from: Google+ Posts]

Tomorrow night on Armistice day, where's the party where we celebrate that we're still alive and we're not at War?

This was a tradition all through the 20s. And let's not forget that Armistice day, VE day and VJ day were huge parties.

We can be all sad as we remember those we lost. But then we need to have a wake.

Never forget. Never again. Peace.
[from: Google+ Posts]

Labour MPs must not vote for Theresa May's deal because "it's better than No Deal". And especially if it fails Labour's 6 tests. It's becoming clear that Labour and Momentum members don't want Brexit. They want a General Election. And if there's no General Election, they want a People's Vote.
 Brexit Consultation - Momentum »
Lets build a Britain for the many.

[from: Google+ Posts]

[from: Librarything]

[from: Librarything]

[from: Librarything]

[from: Librarything]

[from: Librarything]

And as it's in UKIP colours you can re-use it at their next party conference.

A snip at only 25 Euros.
 Humans of Late Capitalism ️ on Twitter »

[from: Google+ Posts]

 FM »

[from: Google+ Posts]

Following Saturday's March Against UK-Exit

We don't need another referendum or vote for MPs to come to their senses, act in the national interest and say:

"You asked us to try and find a way of leaving the EU. Well, we've done our best and we can't find any sensible way of doing that. So we've decided to cancel Article 50 and call the whole thing off. Here's my resignation".
[from: Google+ Posts]

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