REVEALED: Which side was better prepared in BREXIT negotiations?


How to Conduct a Meeting

So much hysteria; so much puerile, hypocritical venom!  What a nonsense the comment on David Davis’s meeting with Michel Barnier has been!

I am, by profession, a business analyst.  If I am forced to I will, briefly, attend a meeting.  My attendance will last no more than thirty minutes.  If I do attend I shall go prepared.  I will carry no papers.  I may carry a small notebook and pencil.  Preferably I will have an assistant who does that.

Why should I bother myself with such trifling details as note taking?  I have a brain.  It is capable of remembering anything worth remembering.

The Purpose of Paper Mountains

If I am faced with someone with a huge bundle of papers on the table I know one of two conditions apply

  1. They have not prepared for the meeting properly and therefore need reference material. Shame!  I will be far quicker than they are and far more agile in the conduct of the meeting because I am prepared and I know the content of my brief thoroughly.
  2. They are attempting to intimidate me. Good luck with that!  This is a technique lawyers use.  Watch them when they attend court or a pre-hearing meeting.  They need a removal van to carry papers they could never, in a million years, be able to examine.  I never met a lawyer who was “right” about anything.

So David Davis had a short meeting in Brussels.  Quite right!  His officials are doing the actual work of the negotiation.  He is there to give them his authority, nothing more.  By performing this way he makes it clear his officials have a clear directive to negotiate and that he will back them up.  Note that his aide had a notebook, exactly how I would have handled the meeting.

That is the mark of a good manager.

Body Language

Note how the UK side of the table is relaxed.  Note how tense the rEU side looks.  Body language is a very useful tool in conducting negotiations.  The UK side shows confidence.  The rEU side shows fear.

Note too that, despite each having a remarkably similar pile of papers in front of them, the rEU side never actually referred to anything in the pile. They would not have been able to.  Anything longer than two sides of A4 is quite useless in a meeting.  Quite clearly these three had never seen those pristine piles before.  They  had been prepared purely for show.  They are no more than scenery.  The UK side had just flown in.  The rEU side were on home territory with an army of jobsworth bureaucrats to back them up.

The Agenda of the Press and Media

Do reporters really believe having a pile of papers is essential to conducting a meeting?  How many of them had such a pile with them?  The most any of them would hold is a simple notebook.  Many of them would not even have that.  Such humbug is not worthy of them.  It is quite clear their motivation is deception.

The  media, at large here, sets out to attempt to undermine the BREXIT process.  I believe, having seen him perform in the flesh during the campaign, David Davis will prove an immovable mountain for his opponents.  He is the right man to be in charge of the negotiation.  It is an incredible piece of luck that Mrs. May chose him for that job.  He is the one man, in the Government, capable of delivering BREXIT.  We should let him get on with the job.  Never mind the difficult woman in number ten, we have an obstinate man at the rudder.

Shift May and Forget BREXIT.

UKIP did not win the General Election!

Yes.  It is time to face facts.  UKIP did not win the election.  The Conservatives did.  The Fixed Term Parliament Act means that, even as a minority, they can cling to power for five years.  Anyone suggesting otherwise is lying.  If the worst happens they can simply sit tight and do nothing at all.  Many would think that is the best occupation for a Government.

You are stuck with Mrs. May, like it or lump it.  My forecast is that she will remain in office until BREXIT has been delivered and only then will she consider her options.  If she has managed to pull of some sort of triumph then she will remain the leader of the Conservative Party.  If not she will make way for another leader and give them the necessary two years to establish their mark.

UKIP should applaud anything she achieves and shout out loud and clear where something appears to be going wrong.

Will she deliver BREXIT?

Of course she will.  She made that plain.  The more it is suggested she will not then the more she will dig in to her position.  She will not allow herself to be seen to fail.  She is a woman.  (No that is not sexist.  It is my experience that women in positions of responsibility tend to be obdurate to the point of belligerence!  That is exactly what the country needs now.)

What are the Obstacles?  The Lisbon Treaty.

If you examine the Lisbon Treaty carefully you will see that the dice are loaded against the rEU.  They are the ones on whom it places the onus to conclude a deal.  Despite their rant they are obliged, also, to deliver a trade agreement under that agreement.  They have to conclude the process within two years of the date we signed notice.

The EU Parliament and International Treaties.

The section that deals with this is open to interpretation.  I read it to mean that the EU Parliament is required to approve the process to enter into a negotiation and nothing more.  Take a look at the ACTUAL wording of Section 50 for yourselves.  See what you think.  I know lawyers would have a field day with this if there were any dispute.

It is interesting to see that the EU has not signed The Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties (VCLT).  Then again, it is not a State.  France is not a party to this convention and is a State.  However, every other EU member State IS a party and any breach of the Lisbon Treaty would be subject to an intervention by the United Nations.

How the Lisbon Treaty, Article 50, ties the hands of the rEU.

© PJW Holland MMXVII

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