by Alan Davies, FUW managing director
I SUPPOSE I better start with a confession. I’m stuck with something to write this month. It’s not because I’ve lost my tongue and have got nothing to say, it’s just that I don’t know how relevant or lasting the message might be. And I’m going to blame Brexit for that. And I’m going to say it’s not just me, it’s also the BBC!
In the last two weeks (and I’m writing this in November) things have become a bit clearer – withdrawal agreements drafted and political statements of intent made – but then have fallen apart in hours or days.
On this (Friday) morning as I’m writing this piece, there is no certainty that an EU leaders summit will take place on Sunday. Or in another way, there is no certainty of something involving the leaders of 28 nations that should, might or could take place in 48 hours. And even if it does take place, there’s not yet certainty that all the leaders will turn up, with Angela Merkel in Germany the leading doubtful attendee.
Back in London, the political classes either welcome, endorse, rubbish or reject anything that is put on the table. Some even read what is being proposed before making their position clear. But in truth not many appear to do so. Much of the political comment is based on party politics not necessarily on the interests of the country with nearly all parties playing this game to varying degrees.
If you had just landed from Mars and were unclear about what is proposed, or wanted to learn more to make an informed decision, you would find it incredibly difficult to do so. Getting a balanced view from all sides of an argument to help you find your own position is nigh on impossible as competing truths, untruths, mis- truths and shenanigans confuse the whole story.
As a result of all this nonsense, I really welcomed an item that the BBC Political correspondent Chris Mason did recently when he was asked: “What will happen next?”. his answer was blissfully truthful. he said “People like me are paid to have insight and foresight, and hindsight about these things. To predict where we are going to go. To be honest, looking at things right now, I haven’t got the foggiest idea what’s going to happen in the coming weeks. Is the PM going to get a deal with the EU? (he shrugged his shoulders at this point). Is she going to be able to get it through the Commons? I don’t know about that either. I think you might as well get Mr Blobby back on to offer his analysis as frankly, his is probably as good as mine.”
For those too young to remember, in the early 1990s, Mr Blobby was a guest on BBC’s Saturday night TV show Noel’s house Party.
So not necessarily the best source of political insight. But at least he helped raise a smile in these really challenging and highly frustrating times.