To be honest I’ve had little time to construct a themed blog today as it’s been a busy time. Yesterday was taken up by an assignment for ACoRP (The Association of Community Rail Partnerships) at nearby Mytholmroyd station where I was photographing the activities of the local friends group. They’re a lovely bunch of people and great ambassadors for both the local area and the wider community railway movement. You can read about their plans for the station here.
Earlier that day Eurostar announced the start date for their new Amsterdam service which kept me occupied sorting out my accreditation for the inaugural trip on February 20th – before blogging the news about the service. I’m really looking forward to the first trip. The idea that we’ll finally be able to get direct trains from London to Amsterdam has been a long time in the making, but now it’s finally happening – even if it’s only one-way until 2019. Of course, the bittersweet moment in all that was the latest piece of the Brexit shambles jigsaw with the Government announcing that it’s decided we ARE leaving the customs union, which can only make cross-border travel harder.
I increasingly feel that we’re living out the script of an implausible play, where the politicians of left and right are hell-bent on destroying their country’s prosperity, future and standing in the world because none of them are willing to grow a backbone, stand up and say – “why are we doing this, this is madness?” despite the warnings from businesses and other Governments.
Here’s a great example. The Japanese have invested heavily in the UK as they were sold the idea that the UK was the ‘gateway’ to Europe through being in the single market and the customs union. Now the Japanese Ambassador, Koji Tsuruoka, has spelled out in plain terms what the Brexit fundamentalists have always refused to admit. “If there is no profitability of continuing operation in the UK – not Japanese only – no private company can continue operation. So, it’s as simple as that. This is all high stakes that I think all of us need to keep in mind.” (link)
That a Japanese diplomat tells this so directly & without frills, should be sounding warning bells. Actually, it should be klaxons, air-raid sirens and a bloody big gong the size of which would make even J Arthur Rank feel inadequate! Mind you, ‘rank’ seems a pretty good shorthand for Brexit…
The Japanese don’t do bluntness, so when they do… The sad thing is that you just know the Brexit fundamentalists will go into paroxysms of outrage about being ‘blackmailed’ and ‘threatened’ – none of which will cut the mustard with multinational companies in the slightest.
Our economy is heading for the cliff edge. meanwhile, the Government has graciously allowed MPs a sight of the post Brexit economic assessments that supposedly never existed. They confirm what was always suspected, the areas that voted for Brexit are those which will suffer most. (link).
Welcome to the first country in the developed world whose politicians seemed hell-bent on committing economic suicide! Still, it’s nice to know that our politicians are doing this out of love of our country, not for any personal gain. Oh, wait, what was that revelation about Jacob Rees-Mogg and his personal windfall from Brexit?