Brexit – Boris’s Coup?

From a distance it looks as though the United Kingdom is having a collective nervous breakdown.  According to Owen Jones, the Guardian, the BBC, Sky news and most of the political classes Boris Johnson has started a coup against democracy.

What is going on?  Are tanks on the street, being bravely challenged by the Middle Classes as they seek to protect democracy and fight for the poor?  Surely it’s the end of the world as we know it!

Except it’s not.  Although I suppose that after years of Project Fear in an attempt to stop Brexit there are those who actually do believe that civilisation is ending and Britain is about to turn into Pinochet’s Chile.  I even saw one woman exulting that she and her friends were stocking up with cans of baked beans as they await the inevitable apocalypse.  I think I’ll start a new TV show called ‘the Waitrose Survivors’.

After years of trying to delay/stop Brexit and a series of seemingly endless ‘red lines’ and ‘last chances’ it seems as though decision day for the UK parliament is now close.  As regular readers of this blog will know I am a supporter of Brexit – believing that the EU is fundamentally corrupt and anti-democratic – and that we should be out of it.  (I don’t intend to revisit all the arguments again but you can read my original post on the subject here – European referendum – The TIPPing Point  ) What we will do in this post is try to give an appraisal of where we are at and what is going on.   Brexit keeps introducing us to new words and concepts – the prorogation of Parliament being just the latest.   So this is an update for those who want to know what is happening.

What just happened? 

The Prime Minister has ‘prorogued’ Parliament.  What is prorogation?   It is not a coup.  It is not suspending parliament for six weeks.  It is not the negation of democracy.  It is the normal way our parliament works.

‘The act of proroguing parliament brings to an end the current parliamentary “session”. This leads to a short break before a new session begins. Parliament runs in “sessions” that generally last for around one year, although the length can vary. A session opens with a “Queen’s speech” where the government sets out the laws it wants to pass over the coming session. Parliament must then approve the speech by voting in favour of it. Parliamentary business which hasn’t been completed by the end of a session is normally brought to an end (meaning it can’t be picked up at the start of the next session).”

The current parliamentary session has been running for two years (the longest since the English Civil War in the 17th Century).  It was due to end anyway.  The big concern for the anti-Brexit politicians is the timing.  This will reduce the amount of time that they could debate Brexit.  But only by three days!   Given that they have had three years to debate and frustrate Brexit an extra three days is hardly going to make much difference.  No one believes that our MPs are suddenly going to get together and do something which honours the referendum (what they promised to do) and prevents Brexit (what they want to do).  They are just time wasting.

Why the Hysterical Reaction? 

There is little doubt that there is a hysterical reaction.  Reading some UK newspapers, listening to the BBC and Sky News is actually cringeworthy.  Even the Financial Times has lost its sense of perspective.   It would be amusing if it were not for the fact that the stoking up of such fears leads to a hysteria which can quickly morph into hatred. Take for example this tweet from Phillip Pullman

Screenshot 2019-08-29 22.20.21

Can you imagine the reaction if any ‘right-wing’ politician had stated that those who disagreed with them should be hung?!  But apparently, this is now acceptable language in our suburbia.   Hate speech is ok as long as you direct it towards the right sort of people.

The argument is that the general wailing and gnashing of teeth is all about British democracy.  But I don’t buy that.  Firstly, as seen above, prorogation does not undermine or prevent democracy.  It is a parliamentary device which is regularly used – without the hysterical reaction that we are currently faced with.

Secondly, those who are most upset are far more concerned about being in the EU than they are about democracy.   There is a petition which at the time of writing has about 1.5 million signatures – what it says shows the intention.

‘Parliament must not be prorogued or dissolved unless and until the Article 50 period has been sufficiently extended or the UK’s intention to withdraw from the EU has been cancelled.’ 

The petitioners are not concerned about the prorogation of Parliament per se – they just don’t want it to be used to further Brexit.  If it was being used to prevent Brexit they would be jumping for joy and breaking out the champagne!  No – for them the EU is everything.  The EU is the Saviour.  Without the EU civilisation will end.  ‘We love EU’ they chant as they wave their EU flags and sing what little they know of ‘Ode to Joy’…

‘Democracy’ is just a meaningless word, suitable for justifying their own actions and feelings.  Most don’t actually believe in democracy – they are technocrats who think that they should be the ones who determine what happens, not the ‘untermenschen’ whose vote unfairly is as equal as theirs.   They regret that we actually had a democratic vote (‘it was all lies which the stupid, racist plebes fell for).  They ignore the fact that the EU is fundamentally undemocratic.  They complain about the loss of parliamentary sovereignty, whilst at the same time campaigning to lose parliamentary sovereignty (once your laws are made by an outside body you are no longer sovereign).  They accuse those who voted for Leave of ignorance, but most  have little idea of what the EU actually is – a supranational body to which national governments hand over their sovereignty).

Screenshot 2019-08-30 06.27.56
The Petition Map

It is interesting that the petition is far more popular in Richmond and Brighton than it is in Rochdale or Dagenham.   This is not a mass uprising of the people….it is largely based on class lines – with those in control being desperately concerned that they might lose their control.   Of course there are those who are genuinely upset and worried (apparently 17% of people in Scotland are ‘terrified’ – such has been the effect of Project Fear), but their feelings no more constitute the truth than those who genuinely think the world is going to end next year, mean that we should all be cancelling our holiday plans.   Its the 2019 version of Millenium bug syndrome – remember when we were told that all the computer systems would break down,  food would disappear and planes would fall out of the sky…etc.  Now we are told that the whole system will break down, we won’t be able to get insulin and planes won’t fly.

 

As I watch all this from a distance I am embarrassed and in somewhat of despair for my country.  From Sturgeon to Corbyn, Farage to Johnson we are led by a ‘parcel of rogues’.  There is none righteous – no not one!    I don’t believe that Sturgeon has the political nous that she is credited with – her alliance with Labour, the Lib Dems, the Green and some Tories in order to prevent a referendum vote being enacted will come back to bite the SNP.  Corbyn is pathetically weak.  For decades he has been anti-EU but now he is going against some of his most fundamental principles in order to try and get power.   If there is a general election, Farage will probably stand his Brexit party against the Tories and that could cost the pro-Brexit parties a majority in parliament.  As for Johnson – I don’t trust him.  Although some of the people he has surrounded himself with do give me a glimmer of hope that a meaningful Brexit might actually happen.

What will happen next?

There are four possibilities.

1.The most likely thing is a general election.  If Remainer MPs get their act together and the strange alliance of Labour, the Lib Dems, the SNP, some Tories and The Green vote against the government it will fall and there will be a general election.  There is talk of a ‘government of national unity’ – which is in reality a government of prevent Brexit at any cost – it’s a strange kind of ‘unity’ that seeks to further divide an already divided country.  That would be a lot closer to a coup but is unlikely to happen because of the personalities and rivalries involved.

2. Leave with a last minute deal – If Johnson’s gamble works my view is that a deal is much more likely.  Once the EU work out that their Trojan horse within is not going to work, they will try to come to some face saving arrangement which allows Johnson to say he has achieved Brexit and the EU to retain much of its control.

3. A no deal Brexit.  If there is a ‘no deal’ Brexit – there will be some cost and some disruption.  But life will go on and people will realise that it was neither the disaster nor the salvation they were promised.

4.  Brexit cancelled – If the Remainers succeed and we end up staying in the EU again life will go on….but it will be the effective end of UK democracy and sovereignty.  I also Screenshot 2019-08-30 07.05.56believe that there will be significant political disruption with a rise in extremist groups. Which brings us back to where we came in….those who are cynically (or ignorantly) campaigning against the prorogation of parliament on the spurious grounds that they are defending democracy, are in actual fact campaigning to negate democracy – by preventing the implementation of the biggest democratic vote in UK history and by handing over our parliamentary sovereignty to an unelected, unaccountable, supranational body.  I pray they don’t succeed.

Brexit for Dummies (and Hope for Visionaries)

‘Confirmatory Referendums’, Propaganda and the Fight for Democracy- Brexit Update

38 thoughts on “Brexit – Boris’s Coup?

  1. Excellent summary, David. It is extraordinary how so many supposedly intelligent politicians have completely lost their senses. I support Brexit and I think that it is actually part of God’s plan for our future. What has struck us in our prayer group is the Verse from Deuteronomy 28:28 – “The Lord will (has!) afflict you with madness, blindness and confusion of mind.” There is no other way satisfactorily to explain the lunacy in parliament. We must continue to pray (hard) that Boris Johnson will succeed!

    1. Agreed. Let’s pray Brexit shines through in the end. The EU may be benign now but bares all the hallmarks of a sinister evil empire.

  2. Wishing you were here, David?
    Please do us a favour and stop attempting to write what you seem to think is incisive commentary from afar. As for the shallow brexiteer vitriol of many of your recent tweets and retweets – well, it is easily dismissed by thoughtful brexit supporters and remainers alike.

    1. What a nasty and vicious post. I permit it here just to let people see the kind of ‘hate speech’ I have to put up with. If you are interested in truth and facts then feel free to give some evidence of ‘shallow Brexiteer vitriol’ that you complain about. It doesn’t exist – unless you class disagreeing with you as ‘vitriol’….

      1. David,
        In your reply you have called my comment ‘nasty and vicious’ and an example of ‘hate speech’.
        I rest my case (sadly).

      2. You wrote a nasty and vicious message dripping with sarcasm and bile and claiming that my tweets were ‘shallow Brexiteer vitriol’. I asked you to provide some evidence of those tweets . You don’t. Instead you just repost my report of your nasty and vicious message – as an example. I assume therefore that you are not able to back up your case by giving us an example of these tweets? Little wonder that you rest your case – you don’t have one!

    2. how incredibly unpleasant, ungracious and unreasonable your comment is. freedom of speech is a privilege, not a right to abuse

  3. David, I’m sure the UK government are grateful for you perpetuating their official line on prorogation, but there are important facts that you omit. Of course prorogation is “the normal way our parliament works” – and yet it doesn’t normally result in such a long suspension of parliament, with so little warning (even to cabinet ministers!), in the face of so much known parliamentary opposition, with the effect of significantly limiting parliamentary scrutiny of a crucial legislative item at a crucial moment.

    And before you say, “but it’s only three days!” – 1) This assumes normal conference recess dates, which MPs have not yet voted for, and which many were planning to vote against; 2) There’s a difference between prorogation and conference recess (eg committees taking evidence, House of Lords could continue to sit); 3) It could be more than three days – we don’t yet have exact dates and you could have sitting Fridays (as well as sitting weekends in the Lords); 4) The Queen’s Speech debate is also going to swallow up some of the remaining time; 5) That’s still several days where government plans aren’t being scrutinised, no ministerial statements, no urgent questions.

    I’m sure some people with concerns about prorogation are ill-informed, hypocritical, hysterical Waitrose shoppers who uncritically swallow EU pro-EU arguments. But some of us have looked at all the facts and are genuinely concerned about the government’s latest action, their intent, its results, and the precedent it sets. (And I shop at Tesco.)

    1. Thanks Adam…although I suspect the gratitude of the UK government will be somewhat limited….I doubt they read The Wee Flea!

      What you state is true – but just further serves to reinforce the point that this is not a coup – just the use of parliamentary procedure for political ends – which is exactly what Remainers have been doing for three years. There is no precedent set (John Major did that a while ago for a longer period)….the government’s intent is clear – to get the UK out of the EU on the 31st of October and to bounce the EU into a deal. You may be disturbed by that – I think it is an excellent idea. I’m more disturbed by those who abuse their positions of power (like Bercow) who seek to acts as the poodles of the EU – and who in so doing make a no deal far more likely….

      1. The fact that this is “just the use of parliamentary procedure for political ends” doesn’t alleviate my concerns, though. I remain concerned that the government is not being transparent about its motives or about the reality of the situation (e.g. misleading claims that this is just a routine event, that this is about introducing a domestic agenda, the comparisons with conference recess etc.) And there’s also a difference from certain Remainer actions, which have been carried through by a majority Commons vote, rather than the closely-guarded actions of a few men (however constitutional it may be).

        But I know that you and I have very different views on this, which won’t be resolved in a comments section! Thanks for listening, anyway. And I’m grateful that we both have someone in heaven to whom we can take our concerns (as different as those concerns may be!) May the Lord make you fruitful in whatever He calls you to today.

    2. Adam, thank you for a thoughtful comment. This is indeed no coup but has turned into a high stakes political poker game unfortunately. Boris can’t be the only one implicated. Bercow changed the meaning of Standing Order 24 against advice in order to delay Brexit. Those who voted for an Article 50 exit are trying to delay the effect of their own legislation. The EU won’t talk whilst it is being led to believe we might remain. If three years of debate has got nowhere why should any more? It’s not an edifying sight; but for the sake of 17.4m voters probably all that the new Government could do.

  4. David, thank you for writing this article which was a pleasure to read. This is a time for strong hearts and calm heads as the former Police Commander John Sutherland has written. Your article helps with that. I voted for Remain in 2016 because my younger son lives and works in Copenhagen with his family and I didn’t want to feel further detached from him emotionally through a Brexit. I also had concerns about national security and the government’s ability to effect a withdrawal. I didn’t see the need for Parliament to have more sovereignty as whatever happens I think EU laws will be persuasive even if not binding. However Brexit does need to take place or there will be trouble in the UK. I’m reconsidering what I believe about the EU. Enjoy Sydney!

  5. Thank you for your continued interest in the U.K. (enjoy the new life in Australia). Your article, as always, is very informative of the goings on in politics. There is a prayer meeting in London tomorrow, for “Heal our Nation”, very necessary at this time. You probably know of this.

  6. Thank you for your incisive commentary, David. You are like a voice of sanity in the midst of the ‘madness, blindness and confusion of mind’.

    I belong to a group that prays for Britain. We are praying hard that Britain will leave and for her peace and prosperity afterwards.

  7. David, I’m afraid you’re quite wrong in your analysis. You are pro-Brexit. So this is action that furthers what you want to see happen. That is distorting your assessment. Constitutionally this is a serious issue. You would see it differently if this had arisen over anything else.

    Constitutional authority in the UK derives from the Queen in Parliament. The UK doesn’t have separation of powers. Legitimate executive power doesn’t come from some independent source. The government of the day gets its legitimacy from being able to maintain the support of Parliament. There’s no other place it can get it from. So for the Prime Minister to suspend Parliament because he fears that it might either remove him or not comply with his wishes, has the effect of chopping off the legs of the legitimacy of him and his Cabinet to be the government.

    It means that the only reason why a person should obey the actions of him and his government becomes proper caution that it might have the power to do something nasty to you if you don’t.

    It is also disturbing that the Prime Minister seems to be frit of putting in an appearance in the House. He only became PM a day or so before Parliament’s summer holiday. He hasn’t yet demonstrated that he can manage Parliament. He seems to see it as his enemy.

    If we go back to the Civil War, part of the issue as far as the constitution of England and Wales is concerned – I can’t speak for Scotland which was still a different country with a different constitution but a shared monarch – was that the King and Parliament were both claiming they had an inherent constitutional authority, independent of the other. Unlike a King, a Prime Minister does not have a claim to an authority independent of Parliament. The monarch’s personal powers within the constitution were not fully resolved even by 1700. There are active traces of it as late as the 1780s. How the constitution has worked since then though, has been that the country is governed by Parliament, and that the title of ministers to manage the executive power of the state derives from their being accepted as the government by Parliament.

    The argument about proroguing being ‘normal so why the fuss?’ is confusing form and substance, as would be the argument that Mr Johnson’s action has the Queen’s endorsement. Proroguing is normally an administrative procedure which Parliament accepts. Proroguing so as to silence Parliament, deliberately so as to stop it interfering with what the Prime Minister wants to do, is not a normal administrative procedure and is being used for a profoundly improper purpose.

    Royal endorsement doesn’t work to legitimise his actions because in this case, it doesn’t come from the Queen seeking to take an initiative of her own – which would raise different constitutional stresses – but because she is obliged to act on his advice.

    That point also, incidentally, weakens his authority as Prime Minister until such time as he has actually demonstrated that he has the support of Parliament rather than the 92,000 odd members of the Conservative Party in the country who paid their subscriptions and elected him as the leader of their party.

    A weakness of the constitution, which is probably irresolvable, and on which Mr Johnson is relying, is there is no way of resolving disagreements that arise between different bits of the structure of government. At least three cases are running in the courts at the moment, one in each of the three jurisdictions, but this sort of thing really hasn’t been a justiciable matter, partly perhaps because nobody has dared to try to do it before.

    As I said, I think you would see this differently if it had arisen over anything else.

    I suspect though I am not the only person who is profoundly envious of anyone who can get a job that takes them about as far away from this as it is possible to get.

    1. No – I thought the same when Major did it..and when it happened last year, and the year before etc. I don’t see everything through the eyes of Brexit…Please don’t tell me what I would think…when you don’t know…and please don’t write nonsense about Johnson’s motives. He would be an idiot to suspend parliament for in effect three extra days because he feared it might remove him…they can remove him next week…or after parliament returns. Indeed this action makes it more likely…

    2. Not sure I agree. The constitutional concerns of the behaviour of the Speaker in doing everything he can to thwart Brexit, plus Remainers willingness to bend parliamentary rules to further their agenda are much more significant than the perfectly legitimate behaviour of the PM.

      I also wonder why you think the PM cannot manage or is running scared of the House. His first performance was both electric and outstandingly statesmanlike. He destroyed in well-mustered argument the venting of the leaders of all other parties. He is in his element in the House and the fear belongs to those who know they cannot master him on their feet.

      1. Alexander Johnson has no legitimacy, because he and his Vote Leave cabinet are only in power because Vote Leave (and Leave.EU) committed electoral fraud. Illegal vote rigging, never provides a mandate; it provides for disqualification.

      2. Again I despair….! The level of hysteria is causing people to lose their minds and believe nonsense. Boris Johnson and his colleagues were all elected at a general election- not at the 2016 referendum. And there is no evidence that any fraud was substantial or affected the result of the referendum…and there was fraud on both sides…Please make your case using facts and reason – not hysteria and prejudice…

  8. Of course this isn’t a coup. But Brexit was about sovereignty apparently.

    Here we have an unelected Prime Minister asking the unelected Head of State to deny elected parliamentarians an opportunity to hold the government to account on an important matter.

    We have a Prime Minister who lied to get the support of his colleagues, we have his colleagues who said they wouldnt back this action if they were Prime Minister now doing so.

    “‘Democracy’ is just a meaningless word, suitable for justifying their own actions and feelings. ”

    Interesting concept. Does that extend to all democratic actions, or just actions to think arent right?

  9. a good summary. I do think that Boris is proving to be better than expected. He uses the team to speak for him much more than Theresa May did, and he is more ruthless than expected to get this thing done. Parliament has fought for three years against the will of the electorate that they claim to represent. This is an attempt at breaking the impass and Boris is doing things that should have been done three years ago.

  10. And,
    As someone who studied Constitutional and Administrative Law as part of a Law degree
    (Uni London), much of which is forgotten, but the basics of which was at the forefront of my mind when I’ve consistently voted against the EEC morphing into EU (in a referendum – which was enacted by Parliament to take us in) from the 1970’s, there is in the UK a separation of powers, in the uncodified Constitution, including the role of convention, in the UK, including 1) the Executive (Cabinet) formed by the elected Parliamentary Party, 2) the Legislature ( the Executive and Commons together plus the House of Lords as a review body (yes, yes, I know) and 3) the Independent Judiciary.
    While I no longer have access to any reliable text books, or law library, it is interesting to note that noted deceased Constitutional expert A V Dicey and Erskine May are still being cited in this farago.
    Those opposed to Brexit have had recourse to the same material (Bercow used Erskine May to seek to thwart , as have those in influence in the the Conservative Party) but the disingenuous outcry when processes are used to further Brexit is self-serving and shameful, as trite hype is sprayed around as if from a scatter gun.
    Parliament, in the Commons, has thwarted the will of the people so far, have lacked integrity, not done what they have enacted. (Conveniently they forget that they only had one vote in the referendum, not a Parliamentary whipped vote).
    The same old same old is being trotted out, including
    1. Johnson wasn’t elected as PM. (We live in a Parliamentary Party system). Neither was Corbyn, nor Swinson, nor Sturgon. I wasn’t given a vote for any of them.
    2 This is dictatorship. How many in the UK really know what living in a dictatorship is really like – I don’t. How many would be able to have made their fortune to be able to access the Judicial system? In a democracy we can have our say, but not necessarily our way.
    3 In all of this I heard it said that politics is the art of the possible. Both positions, although in my view remainers have , so far been ahead in the art of thwarting, than leavers have in leaving.
    4 Frankly the very idea that there could be a negotiation by a committee (as any one in business is likely to tell you) let alone a conflicted and conflicting Parliamentary Party, legislature) is risible, preposterous, as it was from the outset, following on from the Supreme Court decision. It was entirely foreseeable at that point how it would turn out with remainers bent on sinking the ship of state that is the democratic, British Constitution.
    5 All the while the EU has not in good faith towards the UK, in its self protectionism, not wanted to be a “good neighbour” not wanted to see the UK do well without them, in independence.

    The self serving cant of Corbyn, and others is incredulous

  11. It is true that prorogation to have a Queen’s speech is a normal, previously annual, occurrence, but it was generally for a shortish period, not 5 weeks.

    The government is clearly playing hard within the letter of the rules, and hopes to benefit from people not understanding what exactly is happening. Recess is not the same as prorogation. During recess, scrutiny of the executive can continue through the work of select committees etc, whereas during prorogation nothing happens.

    Since Johnson became PM he has only submitted to a single day of parliamentary scrutiny. During the campaign, he hid from scrutiny, and the half hour he had with Andrew Neill underlined why that was the case. What has happened since he wrong-footed everyone is that the government has not put anyone up for any of the normal media round, hiding behind a single ‘pool clip’. It was 36 hours before Jacob Rees-Mogg went on the Today programme, by which time the false and hysterical ‘coup’ narrative had taken hold.

    David, you and I will never agree on Brexit, as we have discussed before. I wish I had the certainty of those who claim this is God’s plan. All I know is that the Bible tells us all earthly authority derives from God, and our task is to pray for our leaders, however woeful or wicked they are. We should pray for Romans 13 government, not Revelation 13 government.

    I’m reading through Jeremiah, Lamentations and Ezekiel in my bible plan at the moment, and it is clear that no nation is exempt from judgement when it worships false gods instead of the one true God. I wish there were signs that the UK is heading towards repentance and the knowledge of God, but I see none of it – not from the hysterical attempts to ‘take the streets’, nor the mafia-style threats from ERG luminaries and Dominic Cummings.

    Lord have mercy

  12. Very good analysis.
    If one really wants to know what the EU is about, it is worth reading the Ventotene Manifesto, the driving document of the founding fathers of the EU, as stated in the EU’s strategy. It’s basic argument is: the population are ignorant, and we the socialist intellectual should be running things. It’s about creating a communist superstate by nudging and marketing because Stalinism didn’t work.

    1. Not exactly a lot of evidence of that doc having any relevance, is there? Plus MEPs would need to cote on any such explicit policies. Is there a link to it by the way?

  13. Like Roddy, I am struck by the political insanity – the ruling class is collectively bewildered and polarisation is increasingly entrenched.
    Why is that? And how is the believer in the Kingdom of God to understand the moves of God in all this?
    The Brexit debate is functionally atheistic; that is, the arguments proposed by all sides fall into the trap of Psalm 14 with no recognition of God whatsoever. This blog (when viewed alone and not in the context of the other blog posts) verges on the functionally atheistic but the comment posted by Roddy above is very apposite. The UK suffers political insanity as a result of cultural insanity – not merely the past 60 years of social liberalism but the outworking of centuries of functional atheism.
    There is a spiritual battle going on. Followers of the Lord Jesus need to be wise, understanding how the strong delusion is holding our compatriots trapped (on both sides of the debate) and we must seize the moment when required to combat the functional atheism with the good news of grace and truth and repentance and faith.

    1. Thanks Tim – but I don’t agree that the blog is functionally atheistic…have you read all the posts on Brexit or are you just dipping in? There is nothing atheistic about the blog…

      1. To be fair, I am just dipping into this one post.

        There is always a risk of functional atheism in a democratic political debate. Democracy is not meaningless – it is a functionally atheistic artifice but it can have an important role in curtailing tyranny. It is functionally atheistic because it places the people as sovereign (and that ought to ring alarm bells). Democracy can be a means to curtail tyranny because leaders are quickly deposed if they act contrary to the interests of the masses but this does become problematic when a nation is given over to cultural insanity (despising what is good and rejoicing in what is wretched). The indication from Psalm 14 is that God is looking for people who seek him, people who have understanding because they are calling on his name. (That does not mean invoking his name for their partisan cause.) When we pray for “God’s Kingdom to come on earth as it is in heaven” that is a prayer of warfare against the world system which fails to acknowledge him. When we pray for “his will to be done on earth as it is in heaven” that requires a sacrifice of our personal will. When we pray for rulers and those in authority, the purpose of such a prayer is that the people of faith may lead lives of faith unperturbed by hostile principalities powers. It helps to view the Brexit debate through a Psalm 14 lense – in fact without such a lense the debate becomes functionally atheistic.

  14. It all reminds me a little of the books of Nehamiah and Ezra.
    Would that through it all we fall back on, find again, to be of the Word. Nevertheless may we all be grateful for our European Christian heritage arising from the Reformation, without which the UK would not the place it is.

  15. I am praying we get out of Federal Europe
    We voted for a common market only
    We the British voter have never had a chance to vote for anything else in relation to Europe
    It’s all been imposed
    Cameron thought the vote to remain would b a walk over and project fear would prevail.
    Praise God for the ordinary voter who said enough
    I find it amazing that so many fear departing Europe. The deal they offered was punitive calling it a divorce. Sadly I’ve experienced divorce and total assets added together and divided by 2 is divorce settlement. Why the silence to all the assets built up in Europe compliments of British Tax payer not taken into account? I believe they owe us big time.
    This FEDERAL Europe run by Germany with French poodle via Brussels is not for us.
    No one in Europe said we respect the British decision and wish them well, rather special place in Hell for Brexiteers mentioned.
    As a Christian I was pleased with acknowledgement of Hell as a place that so few preachers mention now!
    The nation will wobble but in the wobble I pray souls will come to Our Lord
    I see Europe as a Titanic that’s going down and will reform and we are on a life raft and it’s madness to head back to a sinking ship.
    Especially one so anti Christ
    Let’s pray our nation as it totters on edge of collapse, possibly, that it falls into His arms
    And as for SNP independence in Europe where does any sensible people believe their is such a thing!
    God bless our Godless Nation and may we return to Him again

  16. This just in from someone with a lot more wisdom than I.

    Archbishop of Canterbury
    ·
    “I am aware of the upset after I talked about the need to “stop whingeing” about the Brexit referendum result, during a Q&A at the Greenbelt festival recently. Clearly, I expressed myself carelessly and insensitively in the moment. I apologise for that and the hurt that people have felt. Christians are expected by the Bible to “walk in the light” – to admit when they go wrong.

    What I was aiming to say was that in this political situation, just talking in increasingly hostile language does us no good. Nor is it helpful to only look backwards. What has happened is past, and every Christian, every citizen, from every side of the debate, should be aiming for reconciliation and working to reunite our country.

    Before the referendum, I said that I would vote Remain, but that I was not seeking to shape other people’s votes. Since then, I have been very clear that the result must be honoured. I have also been clear in saying that a No Deal Brexit, if it impacted most seriously on the poorest and most vulnerable in our society, would be a moral failure. It would be as serious as not honouring the referendum itself.

    I remain concerned about the risks of No Deal Brexit for the people least able to bear them. These risks may or may not turn out to be reality, but we must be very sure that those who need protection are protected.

    The Church of England is wonderfully diverse and of course contains a spectrum of views on Brexit. What unites us is our faith in Jesus Christ. We recognise that through His undeserved love, there is hope and purpose and full life on offer to every person.

    There is no single Christian view of these matters. We all hold our different political beliefs and ideas within the love Christ calls us to have for each other, even our political opponents. We will disagree passionately about politics, and robust disagreement is essential.

    In that disagreement we must find better language (me included) that helps us remove the bitterness and prioritise each other’s dignity and humanity. What is clear is that, no matter the outcome of the Brexit process, bullying one another, misrepresenting the situation, and disparaging each other’s convictions and genuinely held views only leaves us all weaker.

    I pray we might find a way to debate and discuss that is distinguished by compassionate listening and disagreeing well, as we work together towards a society where everybody can flourish, economically, emotionally and spiritually.

    Politicians bear the brunt of this daily. Let us continue to pray for them, whether we agree or not, for wisdom and strength. “

  17. If we assume that Democracy will not exist in a proximate Heaven, then why would earthly non – emulation of the Eternal , Celestial future be regarded as a major concern?

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