[lbo-talk] Cockburn: The British right misestimated the balance of power

Marv Gandall marvgand2 at gmail.com
Sun Nov 25 09:26:05 PST 2018

The outcome of any negotiation or open conflict is always determined by the underlying relationship of forces between the contending parties. Patrick Cockburn employs this framework to explain why the EU has swiftly ratified the Brexit agreement reached this week with the UK, while the pact is widely seen as a capitulation in Britain, particularly on the right wing of the ruling Conservative party.

“The reason why the Leavers have failed to negotiate the sort of settlement they said they wanted from the EU is simple: what they said in 2016 was based on the proposition that the EU got more out of Britain than Britain got out of the EU. Had this been true, the British departure would be easy enough, because Britain could genuinely have threatened to walk away. But because Britain needs the EU more than vice versa, the outcome of the negotiations were always going to be heavily skewed in favour of Brussels.”


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