Deal or no deal – what local people think should happen with BREXIT


Financial Times

By Bill Heaney

An interesting insight into the minds of a number of prominent people in West Dunbartonshire about the looming deal or no deal on Brexit has emerged in a colourful exchange of views on social media.

This was particularly interesting for The Dumbarton Democrat since it included voices we don’t hear often (or ever, in fact) from the SNP, who have boycotted and banned our on-line newspaper – and still not told us why.

On Wednesday morning, retired librarian Arthur Jones, a member of the local SNP,  had this to say: “I‘m not yet clear about the detail, but it seems to me that the deal May has cobbled together involves an economic status for Northern Ireland not unlike the plan that the Scottish Government put forward two years ago (and again subsequently in negotiations) as the best case scenario (short of EU membership) for the UK as a whole, and, if not, then for Scotland. This was unceremoniously dismissed then as “impractical” by that font of competence and wisdom, David Davis. So now it has become a great idea, but won’t apply to Scotland!

“If so, then the braying, assinine Tories at Westminster add brass-necked thievery to their unconcealed contempt for Scotland. I was going to say that you couldn’t make it up, but these days you certainly could where the f-word Tories are concerned. Principled? They’d struggle even to reach the letter ‘p’.”

Rhu shopkeeper and former Dumbarton High Street pet shop owner, Robert Ryan, refused to hold back when he told his Facebook friends: “The recriminations have begun. It seems that the tabloid press has woken up to what a total disaster Brexit is going to be.

“Apparently though, the blame doesn’t lie (sic) with the press, Farage, Johnson, Gove, Rees Mogg or the lumpen eejits who believed their lies and voted leave. It’s all those pesky remainers’ fault.

“Better get used to it folks as the Telegraph, Express, Mail and Sun try to wriggle out of their completely unforgivable editorial positions.

“Meanwhile, Dominic Raab (the man who only seemed to realise the other day that imports arrive via Dover) is apparently briefing for no deal. It’s absolutely terrifying that these people have political power.”

Robert’s comments got loads of “likes” including this encomium from now retired Dumbarton librarian and author of a number of local books, Arthur Jones.

Thoughts on BREXIT – Robert Ryan, Arthur Jones and Iain Robertson.

Mr Jones, a popular middle of the road member of the SNP, said: “I couldn’t agree more. As Ian McWhirter in The Herald has said on more than one occasion, it is the biggest piece of economic self-harm inflicted on the country in living memory, perhaps ever. There are many who should hang their heads in shame for economic ignorance, putting Party before everything else – none more so than Cameron himself, who has the gall to strut around announcing that he would quite like to get back into politics, perhaps as Foreign Secretary – just like the big wean playground bully(ingdon) boy that he is, with grossly inflated ego and ludicrous sense of entitlement.”

Lucy Mcghee added: “I don’t understand why Leavers aren’t upon arms about those lying pricks….’easiest deal in history’, ‘queue of countries wanting trade deals’, ‘absolutely no downside to Brexit’…. the lies just went on and on.”

Sammy Devine commented: “[I] still can’t get my head around why Scotland isn’t an independent country, bemused, sick, sorry, ach, fecking eedjits.”

Photographer Stewart Cunningham said: “I try and stay out of political comments on FB as it can go round in circles but I did hear this recently and found it very interesting:…/lord-sugar-prosecute-boris…”

David Ramsay added briefly: “[The] best bet is Scottish independence.”

And Sammy Devine asked: “Just how do we convince the unionists, that is the problem?”

Robert Ryan, Sons’ supporter and Burnsian, asked: “Do we stick with the UK (61% of Scotland’s exports), the rest of the world (23%) or the EU (17%). These are the Scottish Government’s own figures:…/Economy/Exports/ESSPublication

Lucy Mcghee said she believes companies “would want to open here after we become independent.

“It would not be easy, but in the end there is no reason Scotland cannot be as a successful country as Finland, Austria or Croatia.”

Dumbarton printer and former SNP councillor Iain Robertson had his knuckled rapped for mixing up England and the UK.

He asked: “Where is the evidence that says exports to England will disappear? [The] UK still expects to trade with all 27 of the EU countries after Brexit, [so] why would it be any different for Scottish exports to England?

“England is not self-sufficient and will have to buy from somewhere. Canada exports over 80% to USA, for example.”

Robert Ryan chided him: “I’m a wee bit disappointed that you refer to “England” when I assume you mean the rest of the UK.

“Yes, the UK would have to buy their goods from somewhere.

“However, there would be a hard border and a different currency to negotiate if they were to trade with Scotland. Whilst in 2014 it was possible that an independent Scotland would have continued to use the pound as a currency, it is inconceivable that the EU would accept a new member without them signing up for the Euro.

“If there were to be another indyref, the issues, economic and social arguments and border(s) and currency would all be entirely different than they were in 2014”

Iain Robertson apologised for confusing his United Kingdom with his England before commenting: “I don’t agree that joining the euro would be a pre-requisite of EU membership.”

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