A riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma…

How do you solve a problem like Brexit?


This is the rough version of what’s happening today… (according to Laura Kuenssberg)

UK Govt – it will all be fine;

Dublin – we can’t budge;

DUP – we won’t budge;

EU – the show is now in London;

Brexiteers – if EU doesn’t bury this bit, for now, May has to walk.


Meanwhile, the real prime minister has refused to meet with May today.

DUP conference 2017

Interesting times.

53 thoughts on “A riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma…”

  1. Tris, many thanks for the pic of Arlene Fatstore MLA (Major Lard Arse) giving a Hitler salute at the recent DUP Annual Bigot-Fest, sorry Conference. I hope you noted Arlene’s tasteful Orange wristband too – you can’t say she doesn’t wear her heart on her sleeve. But to be serious, how utterly fucking appalling that the balance of power in this country (UK) hangs on the diktat of a bunch of 10 narrow, prejudiced, vicious clowns. The only thing about Arlene that I like (just) is the fact that she has rubbed May’s nose in the mess of her own making and deigned not to meet with Madam Catastrophe today, choosing instead to send Doddit (of Hoddit & Doddit), her number two (how apt) instead. Mind you, he’s not so much second fiddle as second flute, I suppose. And, I’ve just noted, on the backdrop behind Arlene, the “Rt. Hon.” preceding her name – Right Honourable – the laughs just keep on coming.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Aye, they make First Ministers Privy Counsellors so Arlene gets to be right and honourable at the same time.

      I’m sure she was over the moon about it, being as I’d hardly use either of these adjectives to describe her in any other circumstances.

      Still, that’s what we have come to… and just to think that they said that if the SNP, Plaid and the Greens co-operated with a Labour government it would be a coalition (which it wouldn’t/couldn’t have been) of chaos.


      And this farce is what exactly?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. What game is being played here?

    When May made the offer in the morning she knew with a certainty it would have to be withdrawn in the afternoon. Therefore what happened yesterday must have been what they (May and team) intended to happen.

    Yet we’re being told a story of “mistakes” and “incompetence”.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I’d have thought that this finesse by Theresa May, which pretty obviously impacts on NI politics, should have been negotiated in the first instance with the DUP. Her call with Arlene Foster probably ruined her lunch! Perhaps having had the Liberals in cahoots with them made them assume every coalition partner is that weak!

      Ridiculous mis-judgement by the forces of darkness.

      I am beginning to think an early(ish) election might be on the cards.

      What that will mean, no-one knows.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. Or maybe it is just incompetence?

      I grant you it’s hard to believe that on this matter she didn’t consult with the woman who is keeping her in power, but, it’s true to say that every time May has had to make a decision, it has been the wrong one.

      Surely she can’t have wanted to look like an idiot being hauled out of a meeting with the president to be torn off a strip by Foster?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You would have thought so, however it depends on what kind of comfortable future Mrs May is being promised for possibly playing a part. Surely there must be some kind of limits to “incompetence”?

        Liked by 2 people

        1. Beats the hell out of me.

          I means she can claim her seat in the lords now having occupied Downing Street. It’s hers as of right. What does she want? A pay off?

          I see that Davidson who only a couple of weeks ago was telling everyone to man up and get behind Mrs May, is now getting right behind Arlene, the Neanderthal


          1. You and I knew Arlene would be on the phone within minutes of such a deal being announced – are “they” seriously expecting us to believe this would come as some kind of big shock to Theresa?!

            Liked by 3 people

            1. Well, that’s what you would think. Now Arlene is saying that the British negotiating team has told her the Irish told the PM not to tell them…


              I mean the Irish would know that Arlene would find out, if not before, then during or after the talks. What good would it do.

              Can’t believe a word they say.

              Liked by 2 people

          2. Ruth is quite the heroine on the Independent website, being represented as the voice of reason and sanity in the Brexit shambles. Wonder if the odds against her becoming PM will shorten now ?

            In fairness to Indy readers, they are probably unaware of the previous seven different positions Ruth has taken on Brexit….

            Liked by 2 people

            1. But on further reading, I get the feeling that different people are reading very different things into Ruth’s intervention, i.e whether she is lining up with Arlene Foster to say no deal for NI and Scotland or arguing that the NI deal should be offered to the whole of the UK.

              Does Ruth know herself ?

              Liked by 2 people

              1. Cairnallochy: Good question.

                She must know that within her party an agreement to that would cause a schism.

                Govey, IDS, Johnson, and the other hard right will not tolerate that.

                It effectively means remaining in the EU whilst not being in the EU. Fine that could be said to be having your cake and eating it. But they you realise that Norway pays more per head for this arrangement that the UK does to be a member; that Norway doesn’t get any grants for farmers, from the social fund; from the structural fund;p for its universities, It has to enact EU law into its own; it is bound by decisions made in Brussels, yet has no representation, and only a couple of meetings a year with EU officials.
                The ECJ still has the final word.

                I think it’s a bit like having your cake, but not having any choice over what kind of cake it is, being told when you can eat it and paying twice the price for it.


            2. True.

              What I have found most difficult to understand is how politicians from Scotland have been able to claim that although they said it would be a disaster, it is the clear will of the people and therefore it must be done.

              The clear will of the people in Scotland was that it not be done!

              Ruth has ignored the will of her constituents for what the English and Welsh voted for, no matter the disaster that she used to talk about.

              Likewise, Ms Foster takes no account of the vote of the people of Northern Ireland, nor of those in her constituency.

              Ruth’s loyalty to her leader is also in doubt. Sometimes we are manning up and getting behind May, sometimes criticising her.

              I wish they’d get on with it, and she could go off and get herself elected in a say English Tory seat and we’d be done with her.

              Although who they would elect to take her place… heaven knows. They are a dreary bunch of no hopers. Jackson Car Lot? Mousy Fraser? Or maybe they’d send Douglas Ross back to Scotland?


    3. I’m sure she didn’t know, because May, like all her ilk, is constitutionally incapable of understanding the “Provinces” of these United Kingdoms. Alternatively, she might have sort of maybe known, but the information was held down in some well-buried compartment of the woman’s mind, along with various other inconvenient facts, such as not being able to have one’ s cake and eat it too. So she either didn’t know, or was incapable of knowing, sort of thing.

      If anyone expects a comprehensive, coherent overview of anything from May or Davis or Fox, they’ll be waiting a very long time. BoJo – oh, let’s just not even start. [Insert your preferred exclamations of disgust at the whole appalling crew of Them HERE, and your utter disbelief at their transparently mendacious and boneheaded machinations HERE.]

      Liked by 1 person

  3. https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/dec/05/we-cant-go-on-like-this-mood-of-resignation-in-eu-as-brexit-talks-stutter

    “At root the problem is that [May] seems incapable of making a decision and is afraid of her own shadow,” the source said.

    “We cannot go on like this, with no idea what the UK wants. She just has to have the conversation with her own cabinet, and if that upsets someone, or someone resigns, so be it. She has to say what kind of trading relationship she is seeking. We cannot do it for her, and she cannot defer forever.”

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha ha… you think ANYONE can?

      Maybot and her brood haven’t a clue what is going on.

      I was hoping though, that you just might be able to shine a little light into the dark?


      OK, we’re screwed.


      1. Just found the Labour Party’s solution(s):

        John McDonnell: leave single market

        Tom Watson: stay in SM & CU

        Jon Ashworth, Jenny Chapman: leave SM

        Diane Abbott: keep freedom of movement

        Corbyn, Keir Starmer: end FoM

        Barry Gardiner: staying in CU a disaster

        Corbyn: whip vote against SM & CU

        Starmer: stay in SM & CU

        Ho hum…


        1. And back to the good old days of beer and sandwiches in number 10!

          Or back to the glory days of Empire and weans up the chimneys!

          We’re at the intersection of differing fantasies.

          Liked by 2 people

          1. I think it would probably ahve moved up a gear or two from beer and sandwiches.

            I suspect today’s Labour men like Prosecco and nibbles. (Oh well, maybe not Prosecco, given that’s European!)


    2. Take deep breath. Hold for ten, relax. Now laugh hysterically.

      That’s much better.

      Eat some more popcorn.

      Repeat. Ah! Going to be a great Xmas.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Lord I thought you were going to tell us to eat more cake… We’ve already eaten it… what’s that you say, we still have it, even though we ate it all? Oh yes. That’s because we’re Bwitish, dontcha know?

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Has anyone else noticed something funny about Arlene Foster’s mouth? She reminds me of Nana in the Royle Family. It doesn’t matter what Ms Foster is talking about: her perennial victimhood; the evil of same-sex marriage; or the fact that the Earth is 4,000 years old, all I hear her say is “Bet she has Jaffa Cakes now”.

    Liked by 2 people

        1. Hah! Thanks Cat A, you got a serious guffaw out of me, which I very much needed.

          Now we know what they have for refreshments at those Ludge meetings where they plan their next manoeuvre to intimidate and annoy Catholics.


    1. Must admit, to an extent I’m enjoying watching it disintegrate. I’m mindful, of course of the mess that we are going to be in when it’s over… but my needs are simple. I dare say I’ll manage.

      (Munguin, on the other hand, will be off to him island home in the Indian Ocean.)

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Well there you go. Border issue sorted with weasle words. Sheesh you would have thunk they would realise by now NOT to trust perfidious Albion.
    So part in/part out the SM and CU. It won’t take long to unravel as they get in to the detail of individual trade items. How do you check for chlorinated chickens without opening the container? No border checks – Aye right!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I seem to remember various scams between NI and the Republic involving lorries full of various things criss-crossing the border at suitable points and claiming export credits each time… can’t remember if that was before or after 1975 – and rather a lot of funny business with UK agricultural, untaxed diesel making its way across to be sold at great profit in the highly taxed Republic.

      Anyway, as a rule of thumb in economics, if there is a price differential of 5% or more between any two places that are effectively contiguous, there is going to be smuggling. (The differential needs to be higher the overheads and risks involved in the operation, for example, transporting your cheapo cigarettes from, say, Libya to Italy in a nice fast motorboat that can outrun the patrol boats if need be.) Border towns thrive as a result of the trade, which is of course a Good Thing.

      There was a hard border between Kenya and Tanzania at Namanga which I used to cross fairly frequently – I believe it’s been opened up now – but no one ever tried to stop or hold up the Maasai whenever they went through the checkpoints, possibly because they (a) knew fine well that your Maasai guy would simply walk across somewhere else where there was no checkpoint – which is almost all of that border – and (b) there might be Repercussions if they tried anything on.

      Be that as it may, the Westminster regime is making me feel quite sick. Would there be room for me on Mr. Munguin’s Indian Ocean island too, do you think? If not, I have heard that there is a settlement at King Edward Point in South Georgia – the name sounds promising, at least.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You can bet that if there is a way to exploit an open border, it will be found.

        As as there are roads that criss cross the border numerous times in a journey from a to b, I suspect that that already goes on and will continue to do so.

        I don’t think that I would have been overly keen to stop any Maasai warrior in the crossing of any border. I suspect that the history of the Irish being unlike the rest of the Brits, and taking action rather than muttering and tutting about being crapped on, may have something to do with the efforts to get something, anything, through at any cost.

        It will, of course, come tumbling down fairly soon.

        I was interested that the unelected Foster had said it was OK with her… and that only a few days ago she said that she would not tolerate anything which made conditions in NI different from her beloved mainland and its queen.

        I was wondering , then, if Arlene can tell me how to go about getting an EU (Eire) passport so I can enjoy the same conditions as she can.

        If we’re going to live in South Georgia, Ed, we’ll need to change it to “Edward Point”. Munguin isn’t really into all this “King” garbage.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. Of course you could tell him that but he knows, because he’s very knowledgeable that Penguin is named after the Fairy Penguins who have a breeding colony there.

            He also knows that there’s a variety of potato called Tasman, but that is named after the State of Tasmania which in turn was named after the Dutch explorer Abel Tasman.

            Liked by 1 person

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