News Update

Posted on: 13th September 2018

Spare a thought for the army of uncomplaining, unsung heroes. Those who are required to make sense of the chaos that is our Government’s management of Brexit. The ranks of stoical civil servants and the proprietors and staff of the thousands of businesses who have been working hard to decode the mantra-laden codswallop and cluelessness of our political masters.

We may be just 198 days from waving goodbye to the EU. But, behind the media reports of unfolding pandemonium amongst the characters we depend on to defend our interests, our unsung heroes are working hard to make things less bad for us.

Also working to make things less bad are the excellent panel of speakers who will join me at a public meeting and debate on ‘Brexit and it’s impact on Cornwall’ – taking place in The Queens Hotel, Penzance from 7:30 this evening, Thursday 12th September. Toby Parkins – President of the Cornwall’s Chamber of Commerce; Ernie Warrender – Small Business Spokesperson, UKIP; Lucy Jewson – Co-founder and Director of internationally successful company, Frugi; Lord Robin Teverson – former Lib Dem MEP and EU Scrutiny Committee (Lords); and Kim Conchie – CEO Cornwall Chamber. (Of course the local MP is again unavailable). Come. Listen. Take part.

Let’s hope the Brexit bedlam doesn’t bury the excellent recently published report headed by the Arch Bishop of Canterbury alongside senior business leaders.

They seem to confirm what many suspect. That the gains of economic growth are being diverted into profit for the already wealthy rather than wages for those who struggle to manage. We’re yet to properly emerge from the longest period of wage stagnation for 150 years.

It’s not just the widely reported lottery win rewards for failure at the top and the obscene payoffs that expose this trend. It’s also the cynical abuse of tax and trade loopholes by multinational corporations like Amazon, Facebook and Google which must be brought to book.

That doesn’t mean we shift from capitalism to something akin to communism. Benign state intervention to protect the wider public interest need not constrain private enterprise and entrepreneurship.

We stopped the Conservatives getting away with obliterating the Cornish border 5 years ago. But I’m not there to stop them now. You see, the so called ‘Devonwall’ constituency (which straddles both part of east Cornwall and west England) could happen if Parliament votes for it next month.

This doesn’t need to happen. But the Conservatives decided to choose a method of altering constituency boundaries which favours their interests most and with it their chances of winning more seats. So it’s a question of putting political interests above the best interest of Cornwall …again.

Of course I agree we should have fewer MPs. But you don’t have to do it without regard for Cornwall. The Conservatives chose to respect the boundary of the Isle of Wight (because it means an extra seat for the Conservatives) but they say can’t do the same for Cornwall!

There are good things in the changes though. We could put right the gerrymandering which took Hayle out of St Ives 8 years ago. But you don’t need to erase the Cornish border to achieve that…