Former British Prime Minister Sir John Major has made a curiously timed intervention in the ongoing Brexit debate, coming in the same week as Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn’s attacks on the process, as well as former PM Tony Blair, and Labour Brexit chief Keir Starmer’s negative campaigning against Britain.
Sir John — speaking in London today — littered his speech with anti-British rhetoric, as well as a clear invocation of the ruling class’ privilege over ordinary voters.
“Of course, the ‘will of the people’ can’t be ignored,” he said, adding: “but Parliament has a duty also to consider the ‘wellbeing of the people’.”
The “state knows best” attitude is likely to enrage Brexiteers and their campaign chiefs, with Tory favourite Jacob Rees-Mogg already blasting back at Sir John:
We had a democratic vote and the decision has been taken. And what he is trying to do is overturn that. That’s the whole point of what he is saying and his speech is riddled with errors. It says things that are tendentious, bordering on the not factually accurate.
You would expect John Major – a former prime minister – to make a statesmanlike speech free of propaganda and cheap comments but in fact it’s all cheap comments and propaganda.
This isn’t a statesmanlike speech, this is one of somebody grubbing around in the weeds for weak arguments and it’s a very poor speech in that regard.
I think he should go back, do his homework and give a statesmanlike speech rather than one riddled with errors and humbugs.
Sir John’s insisted: “We simply cannot move forward with leaving the EU, the Single Market, the Customs Union and the ECJ, whilst at the same time expecting à la carte, beneficial-to-Britain, bespoke entrance to the European market. It is just not credible”.
He added: “This is all very complex. But it is crucial. And none of it has yet been properly explained to the British people”.
But all scenarios were pretty well explained to the British people during the campaign in 2016. Even Remain campaigners were clear at the time that leaving the European Union would mean leaving the single market — the EU’s non-tariff trading area.
Sir John appealed to the British public on the basis that globalism was now a foregone conclusion and that any efforts to resist it would be futile: “Before the modern world took shape – their ambition would have been credible. But the world has changed, the global market has taken root, and – if we are to care for the people of our nation – philosophical fantasies must give way to national self-interest. We cannot prepare for tomorrow by living in the world of yesterday”.
He — a former British Prime Minister — attacked British exceptionalism, stating: “I don’t doubt the convictions of those who long for the seductive ambition of British exceptionalism. But these sentiments are out-of- date and, in today’s world, wrong”.
In 2015 Lord Tebbit described Major and Blair’s betrayal of the British public in placating the terrorists in the IRA and their political fellow travellers. His article in the Telegraph stated: “By letting up with the IRA/Sinn Fein on the verge of defeat, they undid years of good work by the intelligence services”.
He concluded — as some have already concluded about the Major/Blair/Corbyn intervention on Brexit — “All we can know for sure is that, just as he bungled his way into the disastrous Iraq war, Mr. Blair bungled the peace process in Northern Ireland. Although to be fair to him, he has never bungled his programme to become very, very rich”.
Raheem Kassam is the Editor in Chief of Breitbart London