No matter what one may think of Theresa May's performance, branding her "the least competent prime minister ever to represent Britain
" is just absurd.
What about Neville Chamberlain?
"The actual terms of the Withdrawal Agreement are so bad, excluding indefinitely, as they do, all the hoped-for benefits of life outside the EU, while having to accept rules made by it, and paying bills sent in by it, that no one but - it is harsh to use the term, but it is unavoidable - a political fool could have expected to get away with it."
That's a bit premature to assert, to say the least. The withdrawal agreement negotiated by May is not yet dead, and may well end up being approved after all.
Theresa May already has got a 2-to-1 majority for it
among Tory MPs. All she needs is for Labour MPs to cave in and approve.
And they may well do just that when she presents them with the alternative of Brexit with this deal, or Brexit without any deal at all. The reason they are so opposed to the agreement is that they hope for Santa Claus to give them what they want: new elections, or a referendum. But Santa Claus won't, and when they realize that, they may well prefer the negotiated agreement to exit without any agreement.
Every day she stays in office, announcing and then pulling parliamentary votes, oscillating between grubby threats and pleas for understanding, selfishly sending her colleagues out to the media to defend what she has already privately decided to concede, traipsing around Europe like some pitiful but unpitied beggar rather than the leader of a great and powerful nation - every such day is another day of national humiliation for which the Conservatives can expect to be punished.
That's very hard to swallow for proud British, I fully understand it. But the root reason is not May's inadequacy nor even "ingrained European spite
" as the author asserts. The reason is inability of British leadership including the Parliamen
to decide whether they wanted the future relationship with the EU to be as close as possible, or distant.
On the one hand they wanted it to be so close as to allow no physical border in Northern Ireland + maximum access to EU market.
On the other hand they wanted it to be distant enough so as to allow control over European immigration to UK + control over own laws + ability to strike trade deals independently.
One or the other was possible. Not both at the same time. British insistence to pursue both could only result in an awkward compromise. Now the British parliament has to choose between Brexit on these terms, and Brexit without any deal.
And the main cause is inability to make up their minds on a consistent set of goals
, for which responsibility is widely shared between government and Parliament, right and left... Not all should fall on the prime minister: she is an all too convenient scapegoat for the others.