Anthea McDowell writes that she is feeling more hopeful about the next 12 months in politics compared to this time last year.
As 2018 approaches I find myself considerably more hopeful than at this time last year, when the twin blows of Brexit and Trump made it hard for many of us to get out of bed in the morning.
The opinion polls, the Tory rebels, the Electoral Commission investigations, the stirrings within Labour… all of these things give me heart that Brexit can be overturned.
The defeat of Roy Moore in Alabama and the dogged approach of Robert Mueller show positive things can happen across the Atlantic once again.
Finally, the diminishing of Rupert Murdoch’s poisonous influence and the overdue action of Twitter to rid itself of hatemongers and extremists give me renewed confidence that the dark times we are living in will soon be over and that future generations will look back on the last few years as a paroxysm of hate and fear which briefly gripped the world before subsiding back into the darkness.
Michael Gove proposing to scrap the Working Time Directive is part of the process of seeing Brexit for what it is: a backdoor by bosses and the hard-right to complete Thatcher’s work by rolling back the workers’ rights and freedoms enshrined in EU law.
Ending the WTD would put management back in control of how many hours a week you work, and on what days. Ending the WTD would end paid holidays for part-time workers.
I would like to know what pressure Len McCluskey and Unite will bring to bear on Jeremy Corbyn and Labour to oppose this in the simplest way possible, by opposing Brexit entirely and calling for a new referendum on the facts.
I cannot share the euphoria about the defeat of the Government on the meaningful vote in late 2018.
MPs will not be able to send the Government back to negotiate some more because, apart from details, no change will be available; the chance for a radically different Brexit passed when Labour failed to support the Liberal Democrat amendment requiring the Government to keep us in the single market.
Nor will MPs vote Brexit down – the 2016 result will still be too powerful.
Nor will MPs set up a referendum (too close to the next election to incur the wrath of Leavers); and if they did we would lose (too short a time for a campaign to win hearts and
So we need a referendum on the terms to be put on the statute books now.
Michael Romberg, London W1
I am one of the three million EU citizens living in the UK. Although Theresa May allegedly sent her letter to every EU citizen in this country, I never received a copy and had to search for it on the internet.
I am a German national. Now, after almost 30 years of marriage to a British citizen we are facing separation and the darkest time in our life together.
Both our children (11 and 10) have changed over the past 18 months. They’ve both grown up beyond their years. Can you imagine how it feels when the last thing your kids ask at night is ‘What will be tomorrow?’ and one of the first things in the morning is ‘Any news on the radio?’
I can only speak for myself and my family, but Theresa May will probably be pleased to read, that I will not apply for her data-grabbing registration scheme. I’m not a criminal, I have never been a criminal and I don’t want to be treated like a criminal.
Hence I will be one of the EU citizens who will leave the country as soon as I’ll be forced to. Myself, that is. Not my British husband and my British children. They will suffer because of the Prime Minister, the Brexiteers and their contemptuous policies.
Barbara Brennan, Treherbert
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