Javid says the shrinking UK economy will emerge ‘stronger’ from no-deal Brexit. He’s lying to himself, and you

Conning the people to appease the sociopaths in 10 Downing Street will not end well for anyone. Not even himself, in the end

Tom Peck
Political Sketch Writer
Friday 09 August 2019 17:42 BST
Sajid Javid arrives as new Chancellor

Sajid Javid, you may or may not know, is the son of a Pakistani bus driver. He tried very hard at school, got into a very good university, got a very good job in the City, and ended up on the board of a very good bank, Deutsche Bank. Now, Sajid Javid is chancellor of the exchequer, and lives next door to the prime minister.

You don’t get to do all this, and without a helping hand upwards from anyone at all, without possessing quite prodigious personal abilities.

So one does wonder what a slightly younger Sajid Javid, running the show on a massive trading floor, might have made of events of Friday morning.

Which is to say, the news that the UK economy has contracted for the first time in seven years, is currently seven weeks away from, in very significant likelihood, entering recession, and is simultaneously ramping up its preparations to inflict the economic madness of a no-deal Brexit upon itself, almost at that very moment.

What would the young Sajid Javid have said, as he and his City pals gathered round a TV screen, to see the chancellor of the exchequer, appearing on the news channels, to say: “If it comes to no-deal it’s not anything I’m frightened of or worried about, we will be ready for it, we will get through it, we will come out stronger and even more resilient.”

As someone who has spent a little while in such environments, the response is not hard to imagine. It would be uproarious laughter by way as a coping mechanism for blind panic.

“We will come out stronger.” What does mean? We, in this instance, means the national economy, represented in this circumstance, by a simple number.

That number is currently -0.2 per cent. It has not been negative in seven years. Us being “stronger” pertains to that number being bigger. A no-deal Brexit is not going to make that number bigger. A toddler left for too long in front of Bloomberg TV would work that out for themselves within about ten minutes.

Such is the descent to madness. In the ever so slightly amended words of WB Yeats, the best lack all conviction, but they can be forced to go on the telly to parrot out the passionate intensity of the worst.

As a younger Sajid Javid knows full well, and might just wish to whisper in the ear of his slightly older friend, we will not come out of a no-deal Brexit “stronger and more resilient.” It isn’t going to happen. Pretending it will to appease the liars and the sociopaths next door is in absolutely nobody’s interests at all. At the bitter end, not even your own.

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