I HAVE three ‘hot’ picks from TCW’s wealth of topical comment last week. What a week it was – one that will go down in history, not just for the Supreme Court’s coup (rule by lawyers, not rule of law) but also for the descent of Lady Hale’s rump parliament into trying to ban rhetoric. A bad week for free speech as well as for democracy.
My first choice as the Brexit truth antidote to all the hot air outrage and Remainer righteous indignation is Alan Polain’s reiteration of what the Withdrawal Agreement actually is, with or without the backstop. It is not a deal of any sort, but continuation under EU rule without any say until such time as they choose to agree to a trade deal. It is, as he explains, essentially a rule book stipulating how the UK will be governed during transition. ‘Handcuffs’ comes to mind. ‘Why we simply have to leave without a deal’ should be compulsory reading for every MP.
My second pick is Jane Kelly’s wonderfully idiosyncratic, but all the more insightful for that, exegesis on humbuggery. Boris could not have chosen a more apt word against his critics, so there’s irony indeed in the humbug that engulfed him in response.
My top pick is Paul Wood’s post, ‘Beleaguered Boris in a hurricane of humbug’, for spotting and breaking down its aspects. His brief but erudite essay setting out the truths of the affair and why Parliament is exactly the place for robust debate, though not in MP Paula Sherriff’s world view, was a delight to read in a gloomy week.