We must ignore the Three Brexiteers and remain in the customs union


Could this be it: the final cabinet showdown that clarifies our Brexit plan, indeed the future of the Government? Furthermore, who would have predicted, during the referendum campaign, that continued membership of the customs union would emerge as the key issue?

What’s not to like about the customs union? Staying in would save manufacturing, indeed probably boost it, such would be the relief at the outbreak of common sense.

It would solve the Northern Ireland border problem. Importantly, for Brexiteers, it would still permit control of EU migration.

We would still be able to agree services-only trade deals ourselves, the EU would deal with goods. But, services are about 80 per cent of our economy.

It seems that the only blocks to this great national compromise, which would end our Brexit drift at a stroke, are Messrs Johnson, Gove and Fox, playing their usual games in the case of Johnson and Gove, pursuing his usual honest delusions in the case of Dr Fox.

If they cannot compromise on this modest softening of their hard-Brexit stance they should leave the Government. Such a departure would be a harsh blow, but one that we might just have to bear.

John Gemmell

Labour is coming to its senses

Back in those long-ago halcyon days, when the EU referendum was announced, I always stated to anyone that asked: “Common sense will prevail.” Well, I got that one wrong – oops!

Since then many months have elapsed and we have seen an inexcusable waste of public funds, a needless election, indecision, mendacity and a lot worse – but very little common sense.

Then all of a sudden I notice that Welsh First Minister, Carwyn Jones, has said that the UK should stay in the customs union. Further, this apparently is likely going to be the Labour Party policy shortly, having been discussed with Jeremy Corbyn and Sir Keir Starmer.

Obviously said politicians must have been talking to the “gatekeepers” of wisdom and sound judgment at last, which is to be loudly applauded. Let us hope we continue on this sensible road and as Carwyn Jones also said; “do what is best for working people”.

Robert Boston

The Government has lost its mind

I feel as though I have been transported to a parallel universe. Our parallel Government is planning, despite the forecasts, to make the country poorer by continuing with its Brexit plans. Did the people really vote for that conclusion?

Michael Pate

It is reported that Theresa May has said that Brexit will still go ahead in spite of the bleak economic forecasts. So there we have it – a campaign to leave the EU based on lies and now a determination to leave at all costs. It surely is the triumph of irrationality – how much worse can it get?

Mark Morsman

I have concerns about all-women shortlists

On Thursday, Lily Madigan wrote about her experience in the Labour Party and her opposition to Jennifer James’s campaign to protect female representation in the party.

I’m also a member of the Labour Party and I also happen to be a trans woman, though that is unimportant when I am campaigning with my local party to re-elect our Labour councillor.

I know that I’m not really a woman. Women are female and I am male, but that matters little in my day-to-day life. The law lets me change my legal sex, society respects the credibility of the process and I am accepted for who I am.

Tragically, the campaign for self-identification risks all that, as it spawns doubt and confusion: if anyone can self-identify as a woman, what does the word woman even mean? In this strange post-modern world, self-ID cuts straight across the rights of women to organise and associate as a sex.

Transgender campaigners tell me that men would not self-identify as women just to access all-women shortlists (AWS). I’m not convinced, especially if they want to see AWS brought into disrepute so they can abolish them. The result: those men get what they want, women lose, and trans people get the blame.

I’ve therefore given my money to Jennifer’s campaign. We must keep AWS to protect the representation of women. Trans people do need to be represented, but not at women’s expense.

Sadly, in a vicious environment where men and their trans allies allegedly conspire in a secret Facebook group to force women from the party, I must remain anonymous. My solidarity, however, is total.

Name and address supplied

We seem to be forgetting about China when discussing communism

Your report into the death of Fidel Castro refers, as do other branches of the media, to “communist Cuba”. However, we are treated to endless reports of Theresa May’s visit to China. Presumably no longer regarded a repressive communist state. Funny, must have missed the recent democratic elections.

G Forward